Stock futures suggest near-record highs at opening

State of economy is ‘strong’ despite unexpected jump in jobless claims: Economist

Freedomworks economist Steve Moore shares his thoughts on the unexpected jump in jobless claims as coronavirus cases rise and weighs in on Janet Yellen’s nomination for Treasury Secretary.

Stock futures ticked higher Friday morning as traders prepped for a holiday-shortened session.

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Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were trading up 56 points, or 0.19%, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq futures were up 0.16% and 0.36%, respectively. The early advance has the tech-heavy Nasdaq on track to open at an all-time high and both the Dow and S&P 500 fighting for their own record peaks.

Looking at stocks, stores are in focus as Black Friday shopping takes on a different tone this year because of COVID-19. Online retailers, meanwhile, are gearing up for Cyber Monday, which takes place in three days.

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AstraZeneca plc was moderately lower ahead of the opening bell after CEO Pascal Soriot told Bloomberg News that the company will likely conduct a new trial of its COVID-19 vaccine as some participants received incorrect dosages.

Slack Technologies Inc. shares were pointing to a drop of more than 4% at the open as traders digest a possible deal with Salesforce.com Inc. Slack shares soared 38% after news of advanced talks between the two companies broke on Wednesday.

U.S. equity markets will close at 1 p.m. ET in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. There is no economic data on the calendar.

Looking at commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell 38 cents to $45.33 per barrel while gold slipped 50 cents to $1,810.70 an ounce.

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European markets traded mixed with France’s CAC 40 up 0.48% and Germany’s DAX 30 higher by 0.29%. Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 0.46% amid uncertainty over Brexit talks.

In Asia, China’s Shanghai Composite index paced the advance, up 1.15%, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 and Hang Seng index advanced 0.4% and 0.28%, respectively.

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