Investing.com – U.S. stocks are set to open higher Wednesday, continuing the record-breaking positive momentum, with investors buoyed by strong economic data and a stream of encouraging comments from Federal Reserve officials.
Stocks have soared as investors reacted with optimism to last week’s announcement from the Federal Reserve that the central bank will change its strategy, effectively giving it an easier policy bias for the foreseeable future..
Fed Governor Lael Brainard added to this optimism late Tuesday, saying the central bank would need to provide more stimulus to fulfill its promise of stronger job growth and higher inflation.
Additionally, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin spoke Tuesday with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi about stalled coronavirus aid negotiations. Although these talks didn’t result in anything concrete, it may be a good sign that the two sides are communicating again now the presidential conventions are over.
Economic data have also been reasonably strong of late, with Tuesday showing U.S. manufacturing expanding in July at the fastest pace since 2018.
Wednesday sees the ADP Research Institute’s August jobs report, due at 8:15 AM ET (1215 GMT), ahead of Thursday’s weekly jobless claims and Friday’s official U.S. monthly employment report. The ADP report is expected to show gains of 950,000 non-farm private sector jobs, a hefty jump from 167,000 in July.
In corporate news, Macy’s (NYSE:M) reported a loss per share of 81 cents, better than expected, on sales of $3.56 billion. Shares of the department store giant are down almost 60% in 2020.
Specialty discount store Five Below (NASDAQ:FIVE) is set to publish earnings per share of 14 cents on sales of $411.92 million. Shares have fallen 12% this year.
Oil prices posted gains Wednesday, boosted by a larger-than-expected drop in U.S. stockpiles.
The American Petroleum Institute reported late Tuesday that crude inventories fell by 6.4 million barrels last week to about 501.2 million barrels, when analysts had expected a draw of 1.9 million barrels.
Investors will now look to the Energy Information Administration’s release later in the session to see if it paints a similar picture.