Street Might Open Moderately Higher

Amid political uncertainties around North Korea, the market is eagerly waiting for the latest developments. First quarter GDP details to be published this morning is a key focus for the day, with consensus for a growth. Insights from early trading in U.S. future index point to a higher opening on Wall Street. Asian shares closed mixed, while European shares are trading without a proper direction.

As of 6.45 am ET, the Dow futures were climbing 1 point, the S&P 500 futures were adding 1.75 points and the Nasdaq 100 futures were progressing 3.25 points.

U.S. stocks closed mostly higher on Thursday and Nasdaq set a new record. The Dow inched up 6.24 points or less than a tenth of a percent to 20,981.33, the Nasdaq rose 23.71 points or 0.4 percent to 6,048.94 and the S&P 500 edged up 1.32 points or 0.1 percent to 2,388.77.

On the economic front, the Commerce Department’s quarterly GDP for the first quarter will be published at 8.30 am ET. The economists are looking for consensus of growth of 1.1 percent, while in the prior quarter, GDP was up 2.1 percent.

The Labor Department’s Employment Cost Index for the first quarter will be released at 8.30 am ET. The consensus is for growth of 0.6 percent, compared to 0.5 percent a year ago.

The Institute For Supply Management – Chicago’s PMI for April will be revealed at 9.45 am ET. The forecasters are looking for consensus of 56.5, down from 57.7 a year ago.

University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment index for April will be issued at 10.00 am ET. The consensus is for 98 in line with last year.

Baker-Hughes Rig Count for the fourth week will be published at 1.00 pm ET. The North American rig count in the previous week was 956 and U.S. rig count was 857.

Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard will discuss “Fintech and the Future of Finance” at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University conference in Evanston, Illinois with audience Q&A at 1.15 pm ET.

Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Patrick Harker will speak on “How STEM Can Get You Anywhere” at the X-STEM Symposium in Washington, D.C., with audience Q&A at 2.30 am ET.

In the corporate sector, Deutsche Post DHL Group confirmed its targets for fiscal 2017 and beyond. The company continues to expect operating profit to rise to around 3.75 billion euros in 2017 from 3.5 billion euros last year. CEO Frank Appel also confirmed the Group’s medium-term goal of increasing EBIT by an annual average of more than 8 percent between 2013 and 2020.

Electrolux AB reported an increase in first-quarter income to 1.08 billion Swedish kronor from 875 million Swedish kronor, last year, and earnings per share was 3.75 kronor compared to 3.03 kronor.
First-quarter net sales were up 2.7 percent to 28.88 billion kronor from 28.11 billion kronor. Organic sales declined by 3 percent, while currency translation had a positive impact of 6 percent on net sales.

Sony Corp. reported a swing to fourth-quarter profit of 27.7 billion yen or $247 million from loss of…

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