By Peter Nurse
Investing.com — U.S. stocks are seen opening higher Thursday, boosted by well-received quarterly results from entertainment giant Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS) ahead of the release of weekly unemployment data.
At 07:00 ET (12:00 GMT), the Dow futures contract was up 220 points, or 0.7%, S&P 500 futures traded 33 points, or 0.8% higher, and Nasdaq 100 futures climbed 150 points, or 1.2%.
The main U.S. averages have seen volatile trading this week as investors digested comments by a number of Fed officials while trying to ascertain the future path of monetary policy.
The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average closed over 200 points, or 0.6% lower, Wednesday, the broad-based S&P 500 fell 1.1%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.7%.
New York Fed President John Williams stated Wednesday that monetary policy may have to be restrictive for a few years to get inflation to the central bank’s target, while Fed Governor Chris Waller said the policymakers aren’t seeing signals that inflation is declining quickly.
The path of the country’s inflation remains the dominant theme, but investors will also keep an eye on the release of the weekly jobless claims later in the session, especially after Friday’s strong official jobs report.
In the corporate sector, Disney stock climbed over 6% premarket after the entertainment giant announced stronger-than-expected first-quarter results, helped largely by growth in its parks business, where revenue jumped 21% to $8.74 billion.
MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM) stock rose 6.2% and Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ:WYNN) stock rose 5.6%, with both casino operators showing more evidence of consumers spending on personal entertainment.
Additionally, PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP) stock rose 1.5% premarket after the soft drinks giant beat expectations for fourth-quarter revenue and profit, helped by price hikes put in place to tackle rising costs.
Oil prices steadied Thursday near two-week highs, despite U.S. crude stocks hitting their highest level for months, raising fears of weakening demand in the world’s largest economy.
Crude oil stocks in the United States rose 2.4 million barrels last week to their highest since June 2021, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday.
By 07:00 ET, U.S. crude futures rose 0.1% to $78.58 a barrel, while the Brent contract rose 0.2% to $85.27.
Both contracts are up over 3% this week on optimism over a demand recovery in China and following supply disruptions caused by an earthquake in Turkey and Syria.
Additionally, gold futures traded 0.2% higher at $1,894.60/oz, while EUR/USD traded 0.6% higher at 1.0768.