By Peter Nurse
Investing.com – U.S. stocks are seen opening mixed in tight trading Wednesday, ahead of eagerly-awaited testimony from Fed chair Jerome Powell as well as more inflation data and fresh earnings from some of the country’s senior banks.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen head to Capitol Hill later Wednesday for the two-day semi-annual testimony on the state of the country’s monetary policy.
This comes a day after another stronger-than-expected consumer inflation report, and investors will be looking to see if this latest release changes his belief that inflation will be largely temporary in nature.
Ahead of this potential drama comes the release of producer price data for June, at 8:30 AM ET (1230 GMT), which is expected to have risen by a massive 6.8% on the year, a monthly gain of 0.6%.
In the corporate sector, the banking sector continues to dominate the second-quarter earnings season, with Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) getting the day off to a disappointing start, ahead of releases from Citigroup (NYSE:C) and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) before the market opens.
JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) and Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) started the ball rolling on Tuesday, and while they both reported strong headline numbers, underlying profitability at both was seen as flattered by one-offs.
Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) will also report earnings before the markets open, and the market will be looking for commentary on the outlook for travel demand, and prospects for the return of business travel at a time when Covid-19 infections have started to surge again.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will also be in the spotlight following a Bloomberg report that the tech giant has asked suppliers for 90 million iPhones this year, a 20% jump from the shipments in 2020.
Elsewhere, oil prices edged lower Wednesday after China’s crude imports fell 3% in the first half of the year, raising concerns about slowing demand at the world’s top importer.
That said, the market remains at elevated levels after the American Petroleum Institute reported that U.S. crude inventories slid by more than 4 million barrels last week. This would be an eighth straight weekly draw, the longest run of declines since January 2018, if confirmed by government figures later on Wednesday.
At 7 AM ET, U.S. crude futures traded 0.6% lower at $74.77 a barrel, after climbing 1.6% Tuesday, while the Brent contract fell 0.7% to $75.99, after gaining 1.8% in the previous session.
U.S. Futures Mixed; Powell Testimony and Bank Earnings in Focus
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