Stock futures fluctuated around the flatline on Friday, as investors continued to assess whether rising consumer inflation or signs of softening inflation in the July report were more indicative of the path of interest rates.
Trading was muted ahead of the release of new producer price data, which could provide more insight into the inflation story and prospects for a Fed rate delay.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) futures were broadly unchanged, while S&P 500 (^GSPC) futures were down about 0.1%. Futures for the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 fell nearly 0.3%. The benchmarks closed slightly higher, after paring larger gains earlier in the session.
While Thursday’s CPI reading showed inflation rising again for the first time in 13 months, some see convincing signs that price pressures are easing – increasing the likelihood that the Federal Reserve will not raise interest rates at its next meeting.
But in an interview with Yahoo Finance, Mary Daly, president of the Reserve Bank of San Francisco, said the Fed still had “more work to do” to calm price pressures. These upbeat statements helped cast some doubts about the inflation data, which is widely seen as positive.
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