Stock futures fall slightly as investors dwell on the health of the economy


US stock futures were down slightly on Wednesday night as economic concerns weighed on investor sentiment.

Futures contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged down 58 points, or 0.18%. S&P 500 futures fell 0.14% and Nasdaq 100 futures fell 0.15%.

Shares of pet retailer Chewy jumped nearly 20% after hours after the company reported strong quarterly results. Clothing retailer PVH also benefited from an increase in profits, with its shares rising more than 4%.

Meanwhile, Hewlett Packard Enterprise fell more than 6% following small losses in both profit and revenue.

In regular trading, stocks started June with declines amid choppy trading. The Dow lost 176.89 points, or 0.5%. The S&P 500 fell almost 0.8% and the Nasdaq Composite fell 0.7%.

Sentiment was heavy after JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon warned that an economic “hurricane” caused by the Federal Reserve and war in Ukraine was brewing. He said his company “is going to be very conservative with our balance sheet.”

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On top of that, new data suggests the economy is still booming. The number of job vacancies in April, released on Wednesday, fell sharply from the previous month, but the results suggest that the labor market remains tight. Additionally, the Institute for Supply Management said its manufacturing PMI was 56.1 in May, down from 55.4 the previous month.

“The market remained choppy with a negative bias to start June,” said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategist at US Bank Wealth Management. “Inflation remains a major concern, as highlighted by rising oil prices and consumer concerns in the Fed’s Beige Book economic report.”

Indeed, the central bank’s report showed that the United States has experienced only “mild or modest” economic growth over the past two months or so.

“Our view is cautious as we close out the second quarter,” Haworth added. “Global central bank uncertainty and the pace of monetary policy tightening, still tight global energy and agricultural markets – which could drive prices higher still – and headwinds to growth corporate profits are risks for investors in the future.”

Retail revenue continues this week, with Designer Brands, Lululemon Athletica and RH expected to report on Thursday. Big tech names like CrowdStrike and Okta are also on deck.

Investors are also monitoring employment data to better understand how employers and workers are managing inflation. ADP will release its National Jobs Report data at 8:15 a.m. ET on Thursday, shortly before the Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims.


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