Stock Futures Inch Higher Following Wednesday's Modest Losses

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All three major indexes are higher ahead of the open

It’s shaping up to be a volatile week on Wall Street, with stock futures pointed higher ahead of the open, following yesterday’s modest losses. Ever-present economic concerns still weigh, as several analysts raise their odds of a recession, and commodities are slipping in response, with copper hitting a 16-month low. Meanwhile, initial jobless claims last week fell by 2,000 to 229,000. And elsewhere, major U.S. oil refiners have been called to the White House today for an emergency meeting regarding gas prices. 

Continue reading for more on today’s market, including:

  • Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White prices the Dow into alternative assets.
  • Analyst praises REIT’s potential within a challenging economy. 
  • Plus, DRI rises after earnings; Warren Buffet increase OXY stake; and SNOW receives an upgrade. 

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 1 million call contracts and 660,487 put contracts traded on Wednesday. The single-session equity put/call ratio rose to 0.63, and the 21-day moving average stayed at 0.64.
  2. Darden Restaurants Inc (NYSE:DRI) is up 4.3% premarket, after the company’s strong fiscal fourth-quarter results and full-year forecast. The Olive Garden parent also increased its quarterly dividend by 10% and authorized a new $1 billion share repurchase program.
  3. Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRK) bought 9.6 million more shares of Occidental Petroleum Corp (NYSE:OXY), raising its stake to 16.3%. OXY is up 3.5% in electronic trading, and already posting a 92.4% year-to-date gain heading into today. 

  4. J.P. Morgan Securities upgraded Snowflake Inc (NYSE:SNOW) to “overweight” from “neutral,” citing its growing customer base. Ahead of the open, SNOW is up 5.6%. Looking to bounce off recent record lows, the cloud name is down 62.4% year-to-date. 

  5. Today will bring account data for the first quarter, in addition to the S&P Global U.S. manufacturing and services PMIs. 

Investors Unpack Overseas Inflation Data

Asian markets were mostly higher on Thursday, with the exception of the South Korean Kospi, which fell 1.2%. Investors kept an eye on core inflation numbers out of Singapore, which rose 3.6% on the year in May, topping expectations, and was up from April’s 3.3% reading. China’s Shanghai Composite lead the gainers, with a 1.6% pop, while the Hong Kong Hang Sang rose 1.3%, and the Nikkei in Japan tacked on 0.08%.

In Europe, markets are mixed midday, as concerns over an impending recession continue to weigh. Weaker-than-anticipated purchasing managers’ index (PMI) readings out of Germany and France for June are also keeping gains in check. The German composite PMI dropped to 52.0 from 54.8 in May, while the French PMI dropped to 52.8 from 57.0 in May. At last glance, the London FTSE 100 is 0.08% higher, the French CAC is up 0.5%, and the German DAX is down 0.4%.