MARKET SNAPSHOT: U.S. Stocks Set To Give Back Part Of Last Week's Gain

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03/20/2017 | 02:05 pm


By Victor Reklaitis and Anora Mahmudova, MarketWatch



Drop in oil prices weighs on energy shares



U.S. stock futures on Monday pointed to a modest dip at the open, as investors assessed comments by Federal Reserve officials after last week's interest rate hike. A drop in oil prices put pressure on energy shares.



Chicago Federal Reserve President Charles Evans, in an interview with Fox Business cable, said that he would support four rate hikes if economic outlook held up and inflation growth accelerated.



S&P 500 futures fell by 4 points, or 0.2%, to 2,371, while Dow Jones Industrial Average futures dropped by 17 points, or 0.1%, to 20,847. Nasdaq-100 futures shed 2 point to 5,407.



Last week, the S&P 500 gained 0.2% , the Dow rose fractionally, and the Nasdaq Composite tacked on 0.7%. The S&P and Dow finished 0.7% and 1% below their March 1 record closes, respectively, while the Nasdaq ended less than 0.1% below its all-time closing high, hit as the month began.



This week brings a heavy lineup of Fed speakers. After the central bank's decision to resume interest rate increases, their comments could dictate the direction of stocks. But nothing they say would trigger a major selloff that could be construed as a buying opportunity, according to Robert Pavlik , chief market strategist at Boston Private Wealth.



Other markets: Oil futures fell on Monday, as some analysts blamed the drop on global growth worries after G-20 officials removed anti-protectionist language from a policy statement.



European equities lost ground, while Asian markets were mixed. Gold futures stepped higher, and a key dollar index edged lower.



Economic news: Chicago's Evans in an interview on the Fox Business cable channel said that he expected the U.S. economy grow at a 2.25% pace this year. He also suggested that if the economy continues to grow as expected and inflation flares up, he would support four rate hikes this year.



Evans is also scheduled to give a speech at the New York Association of Business Economics at 1:10 p.m. Eastern.



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Stock movers: Energy shares were leading losses premarket. Cabot Oil & Gas Corp.(>> Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation) and Marathon Oil Corp.(>> Marathon Oil Corporation) were off about 1.7%.



The U.S.-listed shares for Deutsche Bank AG(>> Deutsche Bank AG) (>> Deutsche Bank AG) traded 2.5% lower ahead of the open in New York after the German lender issued new shares to raise nearly $9 billion. The bank also indicated that it slashed bonuses paid to staff by 80% last year after suffering its second consecutive full-year loss.



Sprouts Farmers Market Inc.(>> Sprouts Farmers Market Inc) jumped 8% premarket following reports (http://www.reuters.com/article/us-albertsons-cos-sprouts-idUSKBN16Q0XG) that supermarket operator Albertsons Companies Inc. held preliminary merger talks with the organic grocery chain. Whole Foods Market Inc.(>> Whole Foods Market, Inc.) rose 3%.



Movado Group Inc.'s stock (>> Movado Group, Inc) initially fell but then turned higher after the watchmaker reported quarterly results that missed expectations and announced plans to cut jobs.





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