U.S. stock futures were slightly higher on Wednesday evening as investors anticipated several economic reports due out in the morning.
Futures contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 17 points, or 0.05%. S&P 500 futures added 0.22% and Nasdaq 100 futures advanced 0.12%.
Earlier in the day, the major averages ended a choppy session on a slightly higher note. The Dow Jones closed up slightly, 30 points, after falling more than 200 points at one point. The S&P 500 rose 0.3% and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.7%.
Stocks sought stability after a warmer-than-expected inflation report on Tuesday sent them tumbling to post their worst day since 2020. August’s consumer price index report showed the headline inflation rose 0.1% on a monthly basis, despite lower gasoline prices.
“One-day events are difficult to extrapolate,” said Jeff deGraaf, founder and president of Renaissance Macro Research, on CNBC’s “Closing Bell: Overtime.” “It’s one of those extreme events that doesn’t have a sequel and tends to be good news, not bad.”
“Inflation is really a dark cloud over equities, but I think it’s really important for people to keep in mind that it’s not about good and bad markets, it’s about better and worse,” he added, “and it looks like inflation is getting better.”
Wednesday’s Producer Price Index report showed wholesale prices fell 0.1% in August, which deGraaf said gave him comfort.
Investors eagerly await a series of economic updates on Thursday morning, including retail sales, import prices and jobless claims, as well as the Philadelphia Fed’s manufacturing survey and the the making of the Empire State — all at 8:30 a.m. ET.