Stock futures stumbled on Monday but remained on track to book their best month in over a year as upbeat investors keep rally hopes alive.
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI), the benchmark S&P 500 (^GSPC) and the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 (^NDX) were all down around 0.1%, after booking their fourth straight weekly win on Friday.
High optimism for an end to US interest rate hikes has buoyed November’s rally in stocks, setting the Dow up for its strongest month since October of last year — and since July 2022 for the Nasdaq and S&P 500.
In a sign those upbeat spirits aren’t fading, the VIX — known as Wall Street’s “fear gauge” — closed on Friday at its lowest level since January 2020. On Monday, the mood was muted as Wall Street gets back down to work after the long Thanksgiving holiday weekend.
But a fresh reading on PCE inflation due Thursday could put the rally to the test, given it’s the Federal Reserve’s preferred gauge of consumer price pressures.
In the meantime, investors will monitor Cyber Monday updates for insight into whether Americans will splash out on holiday purchases even as purse strings tighten. Black Friday online sales rose 7.5% year-on-year to a record $9.8 billion, while in-store totals also jumped.
Read more: 6 ways to save money on your Black Friday shopping list
In commodities, oil prices slid as traders increasingly braced for more output cuts at the delayed OPEC+ meeting this week. Brent crude futures (BZ=F) dropped below $80 a barrel, down 1%, while West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures were 1.4% lower but holding above $74.
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