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Stock futures muted after Dow starts week lower

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Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange

Source: NYSE

Stock futures changed little in early morning trading Tuesday after the Dow and S&P 500 both started the week lower.

The futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 25 points while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures both traded in slightly positive territory.

The Dow fell 126 points, or 0.36%, in Monday’s regular session, its worst daily performance since May 19. The S&P 500 was down 0.08% and a downside commodities sector – 1.2% – weighed on the market.

The Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.5% on Monday, boosted by shares in Biogen. Biopharmaceutical stocks rose 38% after the FDA approved their groundbreaking Alzheimer’s drug.

Meme stocks continued their rally Monday. AMC Entertainment’s shares were up 14.8%, and shares of BlackBerry and GameStop were also up double-digit. The US Securities and Exchange Commission said Monday it is monitoring the continued volatility in the market and pledging to protect retail investors.

Investors are waiting for new inflation signals later this week following Friday’s job report. While fewer jobs were created than expected in the US in May, the unemployment rate fell from 6.1% to 5.8% and the markets reacted positively to the results.

“The reflation trade is taking a back seat, although the Goldilocks ‘payroll report on Friday served to allay some concerns that the economy might be doing a little too well,” Goldman Sachs’ Chris Hussey said in a statement Monday. “Today’s market moves show that these concerns may persist.”

The consumer price index for May is due to be published on Thursday. According to the Dow Jones, economists expect the consumer price index to increase by 4.7% year-on-year. In April the CPI rose 4.2% on an annual basis, the fastest increase since 2008.

All eyes are on the next meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, which is scheduled for May 15-16. June is slated as investors watch what Fed officials say about inflation and monetary policy. Recent comments from officials suggest the Fed is beginning to prepare markets to slow down its asset purchases.

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Robert Dunfee