Wall Street set to open lower as strong inflation stokes rate hike fears

Wall Street set to open lower as strong inflation stokes rate hike fears

/ 07:08 AM May 12, 2021

Wall Street’s main indexes were set to open lower on Wednesday after stronger-than-expected inflation data fueled fears of tighter monetary policy to combat possibly a longer period of inflation.

The consumer price index jumped 0.8% last month after rising 0.6% in March, the Labor Department said. Excluding the volatile food and energy components, it soared 0.9%, as booming demand in a reopening economy pushed against supply constraints.


Bets in U.S. money markets in favor of a 25 basis point interest rate hike by December 2022 rose to 100% from 88% before the data was reported.

“The argument is whether this bout of inflation is transitory or here to stay. And time will tell,” said Peter Tuz, president of Chase Investment Counsel in Charlottesville, Virginia.


“It’s here to stay until you see labor costs and commodity costs mitigate some.”

Rising commodity prices and signs of labor shortage have fueled worries over rising prices, triggering a selloff that sent the S&P 500 2% below its record closing high on Friday, even as the Fed reassured that any price pressure would be transient.

At 8:43 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were down 136 points, or 0.4%, S&P 500 e-minis were down 28.5 points, or 0.69%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 172.5 points, or 1.29%.

Futures tracking the small-cap Russell 2000 index dropped 1.4%.

Shares of big U.S. lenders, which tend to outperform in a rising interest rate environment, gained.

Bank of America Corp, Citigroup Inc, JPMorgan Chase & Co, Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo & Co and Morgan Stanley were up between 0.6% and 1%.

Wall Street set to open lower as strong inflation stokes rate hike fears

Photo Credit: Pexels

Among mega-caps, Facebook Inc, Amazon.com Inc, Apple, Netflix Inc, Google-parent Alphabet Inc, Microsoft Corp and Tesla Inc fell between 0.4% and 0.9% in premarket trading.


Electronic Arts Inc inched up 1.7% as it forecast annual adjusted revenue above market expectation, betting that demand for its titles like “FIFA 21” and “Apex Legends” would stay strong.

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Streaming platform Fubo TV surged 20.1% after it raised its full-year revenue and subscription forecasts.

Bumble Inc slipped 1.1% ahead of its first-quarter results due after market close.

(Reporting by Medha Singh in Bengaluru, Additional reporting by Stephen Culp in New York; Editing by Maju Samuel and Arun Koyyur)

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