U.S. equity futures are trading mixed ahead of the final trading day of the week.
The major futures indexes suggest a gain of 0.2% for the Dow and a decline on the Nasdaq of 0.2%.
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Traders will be monitoring inflation on Friday when the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reports producer prices for March. The headline Producer Price Index is expected to increase 0.5% month-over-month, according to Refinitiv forecasts, matching the gain in February.
The U.S. announced new sanctions against seven Chinese supercomputer makers.
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China reported a stronger-than-expected rise in prices that could prompt authorities to act to cool inflation.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 0.2%, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 1.1% and China’s Shanghai Composite index lost 0.9%.
In Europe, London’s FTSE slipped 0.1%, Germany’s DAX gained 0.1% and France’s CAC added 0.3%.
On Thursday, stocks closed moderately higher on Wall Street, lifted by gains in large technology companies that benefit from lower bond yields. But an increase in jobless claims dented some of the buying enthusiasm.
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The S&P 500 index gained 0.4% to 4,097.17, another record high following new marks set on Monday and Wednesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.2%, to 33,503.57. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite climbed 1% to 13,829.31.
|I:DJI||DOW JONES AVERAGES||33604.52||+100.95||+0.30%|
Stocks have benefited this week as bond yields, which had been steadily ticking higher, retreated from highs hit earlier in the month.
Investors are showing cautious optimism about the economic recovery, especially in the U.S., where vaccine distribution has been ramping up and President Joe Biden has advanced the deadline for states to make doses available to all adults to April 19.
In remarks Thursday to the International Monetary Fund, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said a number of factors were putting the nation “on track to allow a full reopening of the economy fairly soon.”
In other trading, U.S. benchmark crude oil added 12 cent to $59.69 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It lost 17 cents to $59.60 on Thursday. Brent crude, the international standard, gained 2 cents to $63.22.
The Associated Press contributed this this report.