July 18, 2024

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U.S. Stocks May Lack Direction On Final Trading Day Of 2023

2 min read

After ending the previous session little changed, stocks may continue to show a lack of direction in early trading on Friday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a roughly flat open for the markets, with the S&P 500 futures down by less than a tenth of a percent.

Trading activity is likely to remain subdued on the final trading day of 2023, which has turned out to be a particularly strong year for stocks.

While the final trading days of the year are often seen as an opportunity for window dressing, traders have seemed somewhat reluctant to continue buying stocks following recent strength in the markets.

The Dow ended Thursday’s trading at a new record closing high, while the S&P 500 is also on the verge of reaching new record levels.

At the same time, traders have seemed hesitant to cash in on the recent gains amid concerns about missing out on further upside.

Trading activity may pick back up next week, as the Labor Department is scheduled to release its closely watched monthly jobs report next Friday.

Reports on manufacturing and service sector activity may also attract attention along with the minutes of the latest Federal Reserve meeting.

Just after the start of trading, MNI Indicators is scheduled to release its report on Chicago-area business activity in the month of December.

The Chicago business barometer is expected to dip to 51.0 in December from 55.8 in November, but a reading above 50 would still indicate growth.

Stocks turned in a lackluster performance during trading on Thursday, extending the choppy trading seen throughout much of the week. The major averages eventually ended the session narrowly mixed.

While the Nasdaq edged down 4.04 points or less than a tenth of a percent to15,096.14, the Dow inched up 53.58 points or 0.1 percent to a new record closing high of 37,710.10 and the S&P 500 crept up 1.77 points or less than a tenth of a percent to a nearly two-year closing high of 4.783.35.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the…

2023-12-29 08:46:45

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