U.S. Stocks May See Initial Strength On Upbeat Tech Earnings

Following the mixed performance seen in the previous session, stocks are likely to move to the upside in early trading on Friday. While the Dow futures are up a modest 44 points, the Nasdaq futures are spiking by 131 points.

The upward momentum on Wall Street comes as traders react to better than expected quarterly results from leading technology companies.

Shares of Apple (AAPL) are moving sharply higher in pre-market trading after the tech giant reported better than expected fiscal third quarter results and announced a 4-for-1 stock split.

Amazon (AMZN) and Facebook (FB) are also seeing significant pre-market strength after reporting quarterly results that exceeded analyst estimates on both the top and bottom lines.

On the other hand, shares of Google parent Alphabet (GOOGL) are seeing modest pre-market weakness despite reported better than expected second quarter results. The company did report its first-ever quarterly drop in revenue.

Early buying interest may be partly offset by a Commerce Department report showing personal income in the U.S. slumped by more than expected in the month of June, although the report also showed another substantial increase in personal spending.

The Commerce Department said personal income tumbled by 1.1 percent in June after plunging by a downwardly revised 4.4 percent in May.

Economists had expected personal income to decrease by 0.5 percent compared to the 4.2 percent nosedive originally reported for the previous month.

Meanwhile, the report said personal spending surged up by 5.6 percent in June after skyrocketing by an upwardly revised 8.5 percent in May.

Personal spending had been expected to jump by 5.5 percent compared to the 8.2 percent spike originally reported for the previous month.

Just after the start of trading, MNI Indicators is due to release its report on Chicago-area business activity in the month of July.

The Chicago business barometer is expected to climb to 43.9 in July from 36.6 in June, although a reading below 50 would still indicate a contraction in regional business activity.

The University of Michigan is also scheduled to release its revised reading on consumer sentiment in the month of July.

The consumer sentiment index for July is expected to be downwardly revised to 73.0 from the preliminary reading of 73.2, which was down from 78.1 in June.

After falling sharply early in the session, stocks showed a significant rebound over the course of the trading day on Thursday. The major averages climbed well off their worst levels of the day, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq bouncing into positive territory.

The major averages eventually finished the day mixed. While the Nasdaq rose 44.87 points or 0.4 percent to 10,587.81, the Dow slid 225.92 points or 0.9 percent to 26,313.65 and the S&P 500 fell 12.22 points or 0.4 percent to 3,246.22.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower on Friday, although China’s Shanghai Composite Index bucked the downtrend and advanced by 0.7 percent. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index plunged by 2.8 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell by 0.5 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets are turning in a mixed performance. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index has fallen by 0.3 percent, the French CAC 40 Index is up by 0.1 percent and the German DAX Index is up by 0.7 percent.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are rising $0.36 to $40.28 a barrel after tumbling $1.35 to $39.92 a barrel on Thursday. Meanwhile, after falling $9.90 to $1,966.80 an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are soaring $26.80 to $1,993.60 an ounce.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 105.13 yen versus the 104.73 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Thursday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.1841 compared to yesterday’s $1.1847.

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