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Stock futures are flat as investors await more jobs data

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Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Source: NYSE

Futures contracts tied to the major U.S. equity indexes were little changed at the start of the overnight session Wednesday evening as Wall Street looked to improve upon a mixed week.

Dow futures rose 12 points, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures each rose less than 0.1%.

The moves in the extended session came after a mostly lower regular session.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 323.73 points, or 0.9%, and closed near its session low at 34,792.67. The S&P 500 slipped about 0.5% to finish at 4,402.66, while the Nasdaq Composite ticked up 0.1% to 14,780.53.

On Thursday investors will receive yet another update on the U.S. employment situation with the Labor Department’s latest weekly update to initial jobless claims. Recent earnings and economic data have been strong overall, but some economists worry economic growth and employment gains will taper from here.

“Many factors are likely driving worker shortages; concerns about catching the virus, childcare responsibilities, skills mismatches, and generous unemployment insurance benefits,” PNC Senior Economist Abbey Omodunbi said in an email. In the second half of the year, “more competition for workers, particularly in the leisure and hospitality sector, will support acceleration in wage growth, boosting household incomes and consumer spending.”

The results of an ADP private payroll survey released Wednesday showed a gain of 330,000 jobs for July, well short of the consensus estimate of 653,000. The Labor Department’s official jobs report, which typically has more impact on investors, will be released on Friday.

The 10-year Treasury yield was trading flat near 1.18% Wednesday evening after briefly dipping below 1.13% earlier in the session.

Shares of Roku and Uber dropped in extended trading after each issued quarterly earnings results. Etsy swooned double digits in after-hours trading after the company gave guidance for the current quarter that indicated the pandemic-fueled commerce boom may be coming to an end.

During regular trading Wednesday, shares of Robinhood surged 50%, continuing a volatile jump after last week’s soft initial public offering. Semiconductor stocks were another bright spot, with Nvidia and Advanced Micro Devices rising.


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