The U.S. Stock futures are hinting at yet another positive opening for the stock markets. During the early trading hours, S&P 500 Futures was seen trading up by 0.36% to 1,929.75. Nasdaq Futures surged 0.55% to 4,219, indicating that the market will continue higher today as well.
Iran helps oil rally
The day is turning out well as far as oil prices are concerned. U.S. oil futures held up above $31 per barrel level throughout yesterday. The Iranian oil minister’s statement, indicating the country’s support towards stabilising the oil supply situation has spiked a bullish outlook in the oil market. Iran’s optimistic comment came unexpectedly as several analysts were doubtful if it would lend support to Russia and Saudi Arabia’s decision to freeze output at January levels.
At the same time, investors cheered the American Petroleum Institute’s (API) report, which said that U.S. crude stockpiles fell 3.3 million barrels last week. However, the market will be looking forward to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) report to confirm, due today.
The rally in oil prices kept momentum in equity markets across the globe alive. Asian markets closed broadly higher even as China reported a lacklustre inflation growth of 1.8% in January. European markets also picked up later in the day with most European indices trading higher.
Overall, developments over the course of the day attest to positive movement in U.S. markets, which traded sharply higher yesterday following the release of encouraging data. Industrial output in the U.S. increased 0.9% in January against a forecast of a 0.4% rise. Manufacturing output also grew 0.5%, registering the biggest gain in six months. The data provided a ray of hope that the manufacturing downturn has touched bottom and is stabilizing.
At the same time, producer prices came 0.1% up in January, following a 0.2% decline in the previous month. The data signifies that the U.S. has begun the year on firm footing, which received an applause from the markets yesterday.