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Market Snapshot: Dow jumps over 300 points after retail sales data as investors await Fed’s Powell

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U.S. stock index futures surged on Tuesday, with the technology sector leading the way higher ahead of a batch of economic data, including April retail sales and comments from several Federal Reserve speakers, including Chairman Jerome Powell later in the session.

Walmart’s
WMT,
+0.11%

earnings are also due Tuesday.

How are stock-index futures trading?
  • S&P 500 futures
    ES00,
    +1.65%

    climbed 61.25 points, or 1.5%, to 4,065.75
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average futures
    YM00,
    +1.44%

    surged 482 points, or 1.5%, to 32,638
  • Nasdaq 100 futures
    NQ00,
    +1.99%

    surged 261 points, or 2.1% to 12,507

On Monday, the Dow industrials
DJIA,
+0.08%

finished less than 0.1% higher at 32,223.42, the S&P 500 
SPX,
-0.39%

closed 0.4% lower at 4,008.01, and the Nasdaq Composite 
COMP,
-1.20%

fell 1.2% to 11,662.79. The losses follow another losing week for all three major indexes.

What’s driving the markets?

Investors looked determined to shake off a rough start to the week, with Nasdaq futures surging after a bullish session on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index
HSI,
+3.27%
,
which closed up 3.2%.

U.S.-listed shares of China tech names rallied, with Pinduoduo Inc.
PDD,
+0.32%

and Tencent Music Entertainment Group
TME,
+1.22%

each up 7% in premarket, Alibaba Group Holding
BABA,
-1.72%

up over 6% and NetEase Inc.
NTES,
+0.85%

gaining over 3%.

JPMorgan raised the ratings for the stocks of seven Chinese tech firms on Monday, to overweight from underweight. “Only in March analysts at the bank had called the sector ‘uninvestable,’” said Neil Wilson, chief market analyst for Markets.com, in a note to clients.

Market watchers have been trying to determine whether stocks have fallen enough to warrant a bounce for hard-hit equities, notably in the tech sector.

Bank of America’s May global fund manager released Tuesday showed the highest cash levels since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks in the U.S., the biggest short position on tech stocks since August 2006, and the biggest equity underweight since May 2020.

Investors will get a fresh batch of U.S. economic data, with April retail sales due at 8:30 a.m. Eastern and expected to rise 1% , from a rise of 0.7% in March, according to economists polled by Dow Jones Newswire and The Wall Street Journal.

That will be followed by April industrial production and capacity utilization at 9:15 a.m. Eastern and the National Association of Home Builders’ index for May at 10 a.m. Eastern along with business inventories for March.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell is due to speak to The Wall Street Journal at 2 p.m., followed by appearances from Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester, and after the market close, Chicago Fed President Charles Evans.

Along with stock index futures, Treasury yields were rising with that of the 10-year note BX:TMUBMUSD10Y up 3 basis points to 2,909% and of the three-year BX:TMUBMUSD03Y up 6 basis points to 2.909%.

See interviews with Fed Chairman Jerome Powell, the CEOs of companies including Wells Fargo, Moderna and FanDuel. Register for virtual access to The Wall Street Journal’s Future of Everything Festival, May 17-19. (Select virtual pass for complimentary access.)

What companies are in focus?

: ‘Celebrating that your job gets to live in your house rent-free’: Remote work has fueled U.S. house prices during the pandemic — so what happens when people return to the office?

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