By Devik Jain
(Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures were subdued on Wednesday ahead of minutes from the Federal Reserve’s December meeting, even as big technology stocks continued to fall, with Salesforce.com declining after a brokerage downgrade.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average posted an all-time closing high on Tuesday as market participants rotated into economically sensitive energy, financials and industrials shares from technology names that dragged the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq indexes lower.
Salesforce.com Inc fell 2.3% in premarket trading after a report that UBS lowered its rating on the stock to “neutral” from “buy”.
Shares of oil companies and major Wall Street lenders continued their march higher, with Marathon Petroleum Corp and JPMorgan Chase & Co leading the packs.
On the other hand, tech heavyweights Google-owner Alphabet Inc, Microsoft Corp, Meta Platforms, Advanced Micro Devices Inc, Tesla Inc and Nvidia Corp fell between 0.2% and 1.3%.
Interest-rate sensitive growth shares were also under pressure from a recent rise in U.S. Treasury yields, sparked by growing angst towards the prospect of interest rate hikes by the Fed to curb inflation. [US/]
The U.S. central bank said last month it would end its pandemic-era bond buying in 2022, signaling at least three interest rate hikes for the year. Minutes from the meeting are due at 1400 ET/1900 GMT.
“The rising yields will be a major story of the coming months of course as the Fed is preparing to end its QE purchases and hike rates. And the Fed minutes should give some light on the Fed’s plans,” said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, senior analyst at Swissquote Bank.
At 6:42 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 2 points, or 0.01%, S&P 500 e-minis were down 3.75 points, or 0.08%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 63.25 points, or 0.39%.
On the data front, December readings on ADP National Employment report and Markit composite final PMI are set to be released later in the day.
Peloton Interactive dipped 1.6% after J.P.Morgan cut its price target on the fitness firm’s stock on expectations of softer demand.
U.S.-listed shares of Alibaba Group and Bilibili Inc were down 1.1% and 4.2%, respectively, as China’s top market regulator fined the companies’ units for failing to properly report about a dozen deals.
(Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)