Lower Interest Rates Support NASDAQ Futures
STOCK INDEX FUTURES
NASDAQ futures are being supported by falling U.S. interest rates.
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak today at a Bank for International Settlements conference on innovation in the digital age starting at 8:00 central time.
On Tuesday, Powell will testify before the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, and on Wednesday he will testify before the Senate Banking Committee.
The February Chicago Federal Reserve national activity index was negative 1.09 when 0.72 was expected.
The 9:00 central time February existing home sales report is anticipated to be 6.5 million.
Stock index futures are performing well despite recent weak economic data.
The U.S. dollar is lower, and the euro currency is higher as U.S. yields decline.
Traders are awaiting fresh data on the European Central Bank’s weekly bond purchases as the central bank is seen accelerating the pace of its bond-buying activities.
The “commodity currencies,” the Canadian dollar and Australian dollar are lower in light of weaker crude oil prices.
INTEREST RATE MARKET FUTURES
In addition to Fed Chair Powell, other Federal Reserve speakers today are Thomas Barkin at 9:30, Mary Daly at 12:00, Randal Quarles at 12:30 and Michelle Bowman at 6:15.
Last Wednesday’s Federal Open Market Committee meeting statement suggests the Fed is dovish on balance at the short end of the curve and a bit hawkish at the long end of the curve, which is consistent with the yield curve steepening.
Even after the Reserve Bank of Australia and the European Central Bank earlier this month announced measures to limit upward pressure on longer term interest rates, the Federal Reserve has indicated that it is not concerned about the rise in bond yields.
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