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S&P 500 Futures Advance to Record Highs

STOCK INDEX FUTURES

Stock index futures are higher with S&P 500 futures hitting record highs.

Jobless claims in the week ended March 27 were 719,000, when 680,000 were expected.

The 8:45 central time March manufacturing PMI is anticipated to be 59.0.

The 9:00 March Institute for Supply Management manufacturing index is predicted to be 61.4.

Overall, stock index futures have been performing well for the news.

CURRENCY FUTURES

The U.S. dollar remains near a five-month high.

The greenback is likely to remain firm over the near term, especially against the euro currency, as traders remain cautious due to increasing coronavirus infections and restrictions in Europe.

Germany’s retail sales increased in February, according to the German statistics office. In February, retail sales rose 1.2% month-on-month in real terms, after a 6.5% decline in the previous month.

The IHS Markit euro zone manufacturing PMI was revised higher to 62.5 in March, from a preliminary estimate of 62.4, and was well above 57.9 in February.

The British pound is higher on news that the IHS Markit/CIPS U.K. manufacturing PMI was revised higher to 58.9 in March  from a preliminary estimate of 57.9 and above February’s 55.1.

The Australian dollar is lower despite news that house prices in Australia increased  at  the fastest monthly pace in 32 years in March.

INTEREST RATE MARKET FUTURES

Futures were mostly higher in the overnight trade. There were additional gains when the larger than expected jobless claims report was released.

The June 30-year Treasury bond futures are sharply higher and are testing a two-month downtrend line.

Federal Reserve speakers today are Patrick Harker at 12:00 and Robert Kaplan at 5:05.

In my minority view, I am seeing indications that global economic growth may not be as strong as many analysts are predicting.

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