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The stock market news today features Dow futures projecting a 79-point gain in pre-market hours as investors eye the February jobs report and weigh the eighth anniversary of the bull market. Markets are largely ignoring the recent slump in oil prices and focusing more on economic data that could influence an interest rate hike as soon as next week.
On Thursday, the Dow climbed just 0.01% after a lackluster round of economic data. Markets are largely taking a wait-and-see approach on the timing of the next interest rate hike. Let's look at the numbers from Thursday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
Dow Jones: 20,858.19; +2.46; +0.01%
S&P 500: 2,364.87; +1.89; +0.08%
Nasdaq: 5,838.81; +1.25; +0.02%
Here's a look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus a look at Friday's economic calendar.
What's Ahead for the Dow Jones Industrial Average Today
The Dow Jones Industrial Average is on the move after the U.S. Labor Department reported the February unemployment report. In February, the U.S. economy added 235,000 jobs, and the official unemployment report dipped to 4.7%.
With the next FOMC meeting scheduled for March 14-15, CME FedWatch projects a roughly 90% chance that the Fed will raise interest rates.
With interest rates in focus, gold prices are rallying. So far in 2017, the price of gold per ounce is up 4.5% to $1,203. Not only that, but Money Morning Resource Specialist Peter Krauth also expects the rally to continue. If you want to make money on rising gold prices, don't think that you just need to own the precious metal to see a profit. We'll show you the best gold stock to buy in 2017. This stock could rally at least 91.8% in the next 12 months. And we've got the full scoop on this stock, right here.
It's been a wild week for crude oil prices, which fell below $50.00 per barrel for the first time in 2017. This afternoon, traders are looking to the weekly rig count from Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI). The number of crude oil platforms has increased for 10 consecutive months and returned to levels not seen since 2015.
Trending: The Best Oil Company Stocks to Buy Now
On Wednesday, the Energy Information Administration announced that U.S. crude inventory levels hit a new all-time record. Crude prices slumped below $50.00 per barrel after the United States reported that domestic inventory levels surged to 528.4 million barrels after a gain of 8.2 million barrels in a week. The news could impact OPEC's crude oil deal to cap excessive production and lead to a slow down in the ongoing expansion of U.S. energy production.
This morning, the WTI crude oil price today dipped 2.2%. Brent crude slid 2.0%.
Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors recently attended the Windsor Energy Consultation at Windsor Castle. Energy leaders from around the globe gathered to discuss geopolitics and a number of factors affecting global oil markets. The biggest factor of all?
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Read Moors' latest insight on the crude markets, right here.
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Stocks to Watch Today, March 10, 2017:
- Shares of American International Group (NYSE: AIG) are making headlines after CEO Peter Hancock announced his plans to step down. The decision comes as shareholders grow increasingly frustrated by the company's lackluster financial results.
- In deal news, German chemical giant Bayer AG (OTCMKTS: BAYRY) and Monsanto Inc. (NYSE: MON) announced plans to divest a variety of assets in order to receive approval for their mega merger.
- In earnings news, shares of Vail Resorts Inc. (NYSE: MTN) are on the move as the company prepares to report fiscal second-quarter earnings. The company is expected to report earnings per share (EPS) of $3.45 on top of $709 million in revenue.
- Keep an eye out for additional earnings reports from Hibbett Sports Inc. (Nasdaq: HIBB), Buckle Inc. (NYSE: BKE), Genesco Inc. (NYSE: GCO), Ply Gem Holdings (Nasdaq: PGEM), Citi Trends Inc. (Nasdaq: CTRN), and Kirkland's Inc. (Nasdaq: KIRK).
Today's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EST)
- Employment Situation at 8:30 a.m.
- Baker Hughes Rig Count at 1 p.m.
- Treasury Budget at 2 p.m.