Stock futures little changed after Thursday’s strong gains on Wall Street

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A person walks at the Wall Street subway stop in New York City.

Angela Weiss | AFP | Getty Images

U.S. stock futures were largely flat on Thursday night following a sharp rally during the regular session as investors awaited several key data sets.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures dipped 15 points, implying a Friday opening decline of around 25 points. S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures also pointed to a little changed Friday open for the two indexes.

The Dow rallied more than 300 points while the S&P 500 gained over 1% on Thursday. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.9%. Gains in bank and energy stocks lifted the major indexes while shares of major tech companies such as Apple and Alphabet added to their recently massive gains.

Despite those gains, however, Wall Street was headed for its biggest weekly decline since late March. The Dow and S&P 500 both ended Thursday’s session down more than 2% for the week. The Nasdaq had lost nearly 2% week to date.

Those would be the averages’ worst weekly performances since the week ending March 20. The Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all fell at least 12.6%.

“Given the amount of uncertainty about this crisis that still looms, we should not be surprised by the setbacks we’ve seen in markets this week,” said Scott Knapp, chief market strategist at CUNA Mutual Group.

Weekly jobless claims for the week ending May 9 totaled nearly 3 million, according to data from the Labor Department. That brings the total number to more than 36 million since the coronavirus crisis began.  

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said Tuesday there will be more “suffering and death” if states reopen their economies too quickly. His comments came as some states start letting nonessential businesses resume operations.

More than 4.4 million coronavirus cases have been confirmed globally, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. In the U.S. alone, there have been over 1.4 million known infections.

Major investors David Tepper and Stanley Druckenmiller also raised concerns earlier in the week about the market’s overall valuation. Tepper said this is the second-most overvalued market he has ever seen while Druckenmiller noted the risk/reward for owning equities right now is the worst of his career.

However, Trian Partners’ Nelson Peltz said Thursday there is still value in this market, adding: “This thing is not going to last forever.”

The Dow and the S&P 500 remain more than 29% above an intraday low reached on March 23. The Nasdaq Composite has surged about 35% in that time.

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