U.S. Stock Market

Stocks Mixed After Better-Than-Expected Initial Jobless Claims Report

Stocks Lack Direction As Traders Wait For New Catalysts

S&P 500 futures are swinging between gains and losses in premarket trading as traders remain cautious while the market is trading near record highs.

The market faced some selling pressure at the beginning of May, but it should be noted that the recent attempt to move lower was quickly bought. Traders seem to be a bit worried about higher inflation which may force the Fed to raise rates sooner than expected, but such worries are not strong. The bond market stays calm, and the yield of 10-year Treasuries has recently failed to settle above the 20 EMA at 1.60%.

At this point, it looks that the market will need additional catalysts to gain momentum and move away from current levels.

Initial Jobless Claims Decline To 498,000

The U.S. has just released Initial Jobless Claims and Continuing Jobless Claims reports. Initial Jobless Claims report indicated that 498,000 Americans filed for unemployment benefits in a week. Analysts expected that Initial Jobless Claims would total 540,000.

Continuing Jobless Claims increased from 3.65 million (revised from 3.66 million) to 3.69 million compared to analyst consensus of 3.62 million.

Yesterday, ADP Employment Change report indicated that private businesses hired 742,000 workers compared to analyst consensus of 800,000. The employment picture will not be complete without Non Farm Payrolls and Unemployment Rate reports which will be published tomorrow. Non Farm Payrolls report is expected to show that the economy added 978,000 jobs in April. Unemployment Rate is projected to decline from 6% to 5.8%.

Oil Moves Lower As India Reports Record Number Of COVID-19 Cases

Yesterday, India reported more than 412,000 of new coronavirus cases, putting pressure on the oil market. While oil traders have mostly ignored negative developments in India, the country’s problems may ultimately have a notable impact on demand for oil.

Meanwhile, the recent EIA Weekly Petroleum Status Report indicated that crude inventories declined by 8 million barrels compared to analyst consensus which called for a decline of 2.35 million barrels. The U.S. domestic production remained unchanged at 10.9 million barrels per day (bpd) which was bullish for oil.

The recent data suggests that oil demand is picking up, so oil will have good chances to continue its upside move when the situation in India shows signs of stabilization.

For a look at all of today’s economic events, check out our economic calendar.