(Reuters) – Wall Street was set to open higher on Thursday as better-than-expected trade data from China and a steadying of its currency offered some comfort to investors rattled by an escalation in trade tensions and signals pointing to a recession.
FILE PHOTO: Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., August 6, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
The yuan regained some ground as China’s central bank set its official midpoint firmer than market expectations, signaling an intent to stabilize a decline in the currency. Exports from the world’s second-largest economy posted a surprise rise, while imports fell less than forecast. [CNY/]
“It’s (data) very reassuring for investors because that shows the economics of the world aren’t degrading rapidly,” said Kim Forrest, chief investment officer at Bokeh Capital Partners in Pittsburgh.
Markets have been roiled this week after a slide in yuan was perceived as China’s retaliation to President Donald Trump’s latest threat of imposing a fresh round of tariffs on Chinese imports.
Signals from the bond market were ominous as well, with a closely watched U.S. recession indicator reaching its highest level since March 2007 on Tuesday.
While the benchmark index has enjoyed a slight relief in the past two days, it still stands about 5% away from its record closing high hit last month.
At 8:40 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis 1YMcv1 were up 80 points, or 0.31%. S&P 500 e-minis EScv1 were up 10.5 points, or 0.36% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis NQcv1 were up 39.25 points, or 0.52%.
Shares of Symantec Corp (SYMC.O) and Advanced Micro Devices Inc (AMD.O) bolstered futures for Nasdaq 100. Symantec jumped 11% after sources said chipmaker Broadcom Inc (AVGO.O) was in advanced talks to buy the cybersecurity company’s enterprise business.
AMD gained 6% after the chipmaker released the second generation of its processor chip for data centers and said that it had landed Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Google and Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) as customers.
Lyft Inc (LYFT.O) advanced 7.7% after the ride hailing service raised its outlook for the year and forecast a faster path to profitability. Rival Uber Technologies Inc (UBER.N), due to report quarterly results after the bell, rose 4.8%.
Shares of Walt Disney Co (DIS.N) rose 1.1% after Credit Suisse upgraded its shares to “outperform” on positive investor sentiment as its video streaming service Disney+ closes in on its U.S. launch.
Shares of CenturyLink Inc (CTL.N) fell 3.5% after the telecommunications services provider missed second-quarter revenue estimates.
Reporting by Medha Singh and Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Anil D’Silva