Stock Futures Stutter on Mixed Earnings, Higher Inflation
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were trading sideways Tuesday as investors digested a mix of earnings from blue chip companies amid signs of an uptick in inflation ahead of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's scheduled appearance on Wednesday before a congressional committee.
Bernanke is slated to speak before the House Financial Services Committee in his semi-annual monetary policy report. Although his speech at the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Mass. last week indicated continued easy monetary policy for some time to come, there remains the concern that tougher stances on policy might arise at the hearing matching views presented at the most recent gathering of the central bank's policymaking Federal Open Market Committee.
Futures for the S&P 500 were unchanged, or 0.55 points above fair value, to 1,677.5. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 1 point, or 3.74 points above fair value, to 15,417. Futures for the Nasdaq were up 2.75 points, or 2.55 points above fair value, to 3,075.75.
The latest inflation report was doing little to dampen views that the Fed could announce a reduction in asset purchases in September. The consumer price index rose by a greater than expected 0.5% in June after rising 0.1% in May, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Economists, on average, were expecting an increase of 0.3% in June, according to Thomson Reuters . Excluding food and energy costs, core prices advanced 0.2%, as expected, after rising by 0.2% in May.
Industrial production growth came in at greater-than-expected 0.3% in June after being unchanged in May, according to the Federal Reserve . Economists were expecting growth of 0.2% June capacity utilization was 77.8% versus the average economist expectation of 77.7% following May's upwardly-revised 77.7%.
Diversified healthcare company Johnson & Johnson