Stock futures fall as Wall Street braces for final full week before election

A man walks a dog in the shade away from the midday sun past the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) building in Manhattan, during hot weather in New York City, New York, U.S., August 11, 2020.

Mike Segar | Reuters

Futures tied to major U.S. equity benchmarks traded lower in overnight trading Sunday as Wall Street headed for the last full trading week ahead of Election Day.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures dipped about 130 points, indicating a loss of 170 points at Monday’s open. The S&P 500 futures and the Nasdaq 100 futures both fell 0.5%.

This week marks the last week of October and the final trading period before Nov. 3. Major averages are on track for modest gains for the month, with the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq both rising more than 3% so far. The 30-stock Dow is up about 2% this month.

“Based on the action in the stock market we’ve seen over the past two weeks, it seems to us that it will take some serious new-news to fuel a significant decline over the next week and a half,” Matt Maley, chief market strategist at Miller Tabak, said in a note on Sunday.

Former Vice President Joe Biden maintains a sizable lead over President Donald Trump in national polls, although the gap has narrowed slightly as of late.

Traders will keep their eyes peeled for a raft of Big Tech and blue-chip corporate earnings as well as key economic data this week. Apple, Facebook, Alphabet, Amazon, Boeing and Caterpillar all report later in the week, while the first look at third quarter GDP is due on Thursday.

The Dow and the S&P 500 are coming off their first losing week in four as talks over the next coronavirus stimulus package dragged on. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Friday that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is “still dug in” on a number of issues in the aid deal.

Meanwhile, the U.S. has reported a record-breaking number of new coronavirus cases amid outbreaks in Sun Belt states. The country saw more than 83,000 new infections on both Friday and Saturday, surpassing the last record of roughly 77,300 cases on July 16, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said Sunday that the U.S. will not get control of the pandemic amid the surge in new cases. Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff and three aids tested positive for coronavirus, but his office said he will not quarantine himself.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury yield jumped to a four-month high of 0.84% last week, sparking a rally in bank stocks.

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