Stock futures rise as Wall Street awaits speech from Fed Chair Powell

Wall Street opens higher as investors await Fed Chair Powell's speech

Stock futures rose on Wednesday as Wall Street awaited a speech from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.

Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 38 points, or 0.14%. S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 0.2% and 0.4%, respectively.

Powell will give a speech at the Brookings Institution that may provide insight into the central bank’s thinking on future rate hikes. The Federal Reserve is scheduled to meet later this month and is widely expected to raise rates by 0.5 percentage points after raising rates four times in a row by 0.75 percentage points to curb high inflation. A pause in rate hikes or a reversal could send markets higher.

“This is a Fed-made recession, so eventually when he turns, the market should move higher pretty quickly,” Grasso Global CEO Steve Grasso said on CNBC’s “Fast Money.”

Wall Street had a mixed performance. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.59%, while the S&P 500 fell 0.16%, marking its third straight session of losses. The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged higher, closing up 3.07 points, or 0.01%.

China’s zero-Covid policy weighed on stocks, and even as the country announced measures to reopen, such as boosting vaccination rates for the elderly, it failed to fully recover from losses.

On the data front, the ADP private employment report is due on Wednesday, as is the latest survey of job vacancies and labor turnover for October. Pending home sales and the Fed’s Beige Book will also be released on Wednesday, providing more clues on the state of the U.S. economy.

Earnings season continues, too, with Salesforce, Petco, and Five Below all in the pipeline.

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