Stock futures inch lower ahead of retail salesNEW YORK (AP) — Stock futures inched lower Tuesday as investors put a rally on hold ahead of a new report on retail sales.
By: STEPHEN BERNARD,AP Business Writer, Worthington Daily Globe
NEW YORK (AP) — Stock futures inched lower Tuesday as investors put a rally on hold ahead of a new report on retail sales.
The dollar hit a new 15-year low against Japan's yen and Treasury prices rose, further indications investors were ready to take a break from the September rally.
Traders have driven stocks higher throughout the month following signs that the economy continues to grow, albeit slowly. The Dow Jones industrial average has climbed eight of the past nine days and is off to its best September start since 1939.
Data over the past two weeks has regularly beaten relatively modest forecasts, which has reduced fears the economy will fall back into recession.
Tuesday's report on retail sales is expected to fall inline with the trend of modest expansion that has been seen in other reports such as unemployment and manufacturing data over the past couple of weeks. The Commerce Department is expected to report Tuesday that retail sales rose 0.3 percent in August, according to economists polled by Thomson Reuters.
The retail sales report is due out at 8:30 a.m. EDT.
Ahead of the opening bell, Dow Jones industrial average futures fell 25, or 0.2 percent, to 10,447. Standard & Poor's 500 index futures fell 3.50, or 0.3 percent, to 1,112.70, while Nasdaq 100 index futures fell 6.50, or 0.3 percent, to 1,910.25.
Bond prices rose, driving down interest rates. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which moves opposite its price, fell to 2.71 percent from 2.75 percent late Monday. Its yield is used as a gauge to set interest rates on mortgages and other consumer loans.
The market rally has come on light volume, which can exaggerate moves and means many traders aren't confident enough yet to participate in the recent surge. September has been a historically bad month for stocks, but coming off a weak August this year traders remaining in the market have bid up stocks aggressively. The Dow has gained 5.3 percent so far in September.
Global markets also paused Tuesday as the dollar weakened against the yen. Japan's Nikkei stock average fell 0.2 percent as its strengthening currency hurts major manufactures that rely on exporting goods, like Sony and Toyota.
Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.2 percent, Germany's DAX index dipped 0.2 percent, and France's CAC-40 fell 0.3 percent.