Stock Futures Cautious on Mixed Housing Data, Fed Watch as Adobe Jumps
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were little changed Wednesday as investors digested mixed U.S. housing market data and wait for the Federal Reserve to announce whether it will begin cutting back on the central bank's bond-buying stimulus program.
Futures for the S&P 500 were up 0.5 points, or 1.59 points above fair value, to 1,698.75. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down 3 points, or 21.27 points above fair value, to 15,462. Futures for the Nasdaq were ahead by 6.25 points, or 7.87 points above fair value, to 3,190.25.
In company news, Adobe Systems
Still, shares were gaining more than 6% to $51.06 in premarket trading as investors noted that Adobe has been shifting its business to a subscription-based model. The company said subscription revenue rose 73% to $299.4 million and its Creative Cloud service gained 331,000 paying subscribers during the quarter, surpassing 1 million.
The FOMC meeting announcement is expected take place at 2 p.m. EDT, followed by a press conference with Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke at 2:30 p.m. It's widely expected that the Fed will reduce the pace of its monthly bond purchases by $10 billion while emphasizing that the Fed funds rate will be kept at a low level.
"Tension and excitement build up as we eagerly anticipate the announcement of the policy decision," Joyce Liu, a Singapore-based investment analyst at Phillip Futures, commented in a note.
The Census Bureau reported Wednesday a smaller than expected increase in U.S. housing starts to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 891,000 in August versus the average economist expectation of 917,000 driven by the volatile multi-family sector. Similarly, building permits also rose less than expected to 918,000 compared with expectations of an annual rate of 950,000 due to a slide in the multi-family sector as well. However, gains of 3% in single family permits continued to provide reassurances on the housing market recovery.