Stock futures were firmly higher Thursday as central bankers around the globe convene for the U.S. Federal Reserve’s highly-anticipated Jackson Hole economic symposium.
Contracts on the S&P 500 jumped 0.5% after the index snapped a three-day losing streak in the previous session. Dow Jones Industrial futures added 80 points, or 0.3%, while futures tied to the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.6%.
Investors will tune in to the central bank’s gathering in Wyoming for clues from Fed officials on the pace and magnitude of their rate-hiking plans for the rest of this year as activity appears to slow across some facets of the U.S. economy. The most closely-watched portion of the meeting is set for Friday, with Chair Jerome Powell scheduled to deliver remarks that may indicate whether the central bank’s next policy announcement in September will result in another 75 basis point rate hike or lighter bump of 0.50%.
“The broad expectation is for Jerome Powell to continue his narrative on fighting inflation while dissuading markets from the notion that the Fed has made a dovish pivot,” David Norris, partner and head of U.S. credit at TwentyFour Asset Management said in a note. “Markets are anticipating a more hawkish statement from Powell along the lines of a ‘higher for longer’ narrative on interest rates.”
Still, Federal Reserve policy is expected to be dictated by economic data on a meeting-by-meeting basis. A busy lineup of releases is in store for traders on Thursday, with a second estimate of Q2 U.S. GDP on deck and the latest jobless claims figures due out.
On the earnings front, shares of Nvidia (NVDA) dropped more than 4% pre-market after the chipmaker reported quarterly results late Wednesday that missed estimates and lowered its guidance for the period ahead.
Salesforce (CRM) shares tumbled nearly 7% in extended trading after the software giant slashed its outlook for annual revenue and profit over a stronger dollar and more tempered spending by its customers.
Meanwhile, Tesla’s (TSLA) stock was up about 1.4% ahead of the open after the electric-vehicle giant executed the 3-for-1 stock split approved by shareholders earlier this month after the bell Wednesday. The move comes exactly two years after a 5-for-1 stock split and is aimed to attract more retail investors.
Crude oil futures held near $95 per barrel. Earlier this week, Saudi Arabia suggested the OPEC+ alliance may make possible cuts to production.
Alexandra Semenova is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @alexandraandnyc