US Futures Edge Lower; Durable Goods Slip Less-Than-Expected, Jobless Claims Higher
U.S. stock futures were only slightly lower Thursday as durable goods slipped less than expected and as jobless claims were higher. Later today, Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen's will testify before the Senate Banking Committee.
January durable goods orders fell 1.0% compared to the consensus for a 1.5% decline. Meanwhile, December durable goods orders were revised downwards to a 5.3% drop from initially 4.3%. Initial jobless claims data for the week ended Feb. 22 were also out this morning, up 14,000 at 348,000 compared to the 335,000 consensus. Claims in the week ended Feb. 15 were revised downwards to 334,000 from 336,000.
Later today, Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen will testify in front of the Senate Banking Committee. It is the second day of her semi-annual monetary policy testimony, which was delayed due to weather. On her first day she didn't express considerable worry about emerging market financial market volatility or the recent set of weaker US data. She also said it would likely require "notable" change in the outlook for the Fed to pause or increase the pace of tapering its now $75 billion-a-month asset purchasing program.
In equities, J.C. Penney ( JCP ) jumped nearly 25% in pre-market trade after reporting Q4 results that beat analysts expectations. Another retailer, Best Buy ( BBY ) rose nearly 8% as EPS exceeded the average consensus, even as sales fell more than expected.