US stock futures retreated on Tuesday, sliding away from recent highs as investors looked ahead to a crucial inflation update that could shift the needle for interest-rate cuts.
S&P 500 (^GSPC) futures sank 0.4%, after the benchmark faltered Monday in its bid to keep its historic rally above 5,000 going. Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) fell 0.1%, losing grip of a record closing high, while those on the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 (^NDX) dropped 0.6% to pace declines.
Investors get their first look at inflation in 2024 on Tuesday, with the release of the Consumer Price Index for January. The CPI report, a key data input in the Federal Reserve’s policy making, is expected to show headline inflation fell below 3% for the first time since March 2021.
A lower number than expected could revive optimism for an early interest-rate cut this year, even after a parade of Fed officials stressed they need to be really convinced inflation is cooling for a pivot on policy.
Read more: What the Fed rate decision means for bank accounts, CDs, loans, and credit cards
Also on deck is the next wave of corporate results in a better-than-expected earnings season. Eyes are on Coca-Cola (KO), Shopify (SHOP), and Airbnb (ABNB), among others, as investors watch for signs of a broadening beyond the “Magnificent Seven” earnings projections to drive market returns.
In other markets, the price of bitcoin (BTC-USD) hovered around $50,000 after the leading cryptocurrency hit the closely watched level for the first time since 2021, seen as a remarkable comeback.