U.S. stock market index futures rose Tuesday as Wall Street tried to start the new year on a strong note. Traders also braced themselves for a flurry of economic data coming this week. Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 149 points, or 0.44%. S&P 500 futures gained 0.51%, and Nasdaq 100 futures climbed 0.73%. The major averages closed 2022 with their worst annual losses since 2008, snapping a three-year win streak. The Dow ended the year down about 8.8%, and 10.3% off its 52-week high. The S&P 500 lost 19.4% for the year and sits more than 20% below its record high. The tech-heavy Nasdaq tumbled 33.1% last year. History shows the U.S. stock market tends to rebound after down years. In fact, the S&P 500 has, on average, rebounded by 15% in the next year following a year where it lost more than 1%. Still, any recovery hinges on the resolution of a few main factors that weighed on stocks in 2022. Inflation sparking “the worst defeat for both stocks and bonds in decades” was the biggest investor narrative for 2022, according to Greg Bassuk, CEO of AXS Investments. The new year kicks off with a cloud of worry that a “harder-than-desired landing” by the Fed and its inflation fighting moves could push the economy into a recession. “2022 was characterized by an inflation-blindsiding market rout, in part because the year was kicked off with Wall Street and Main Street both anticipating a containment on rising prices and a Federal Reserve that would hold rates at lower levels,” he said. “But a fiercely opposite reality endured as inflation skyrocketed.” “Moving into 2023, as prices remain materially elevated, investors would be prudent to consider inflation-sensitive assets, as well as cyclical and other stocks that tend to do well in rising price environments,” he added. Investors are getting a bundle of data in the first trading week of the year. First up are S&P Global manufacturing PMI and construction spending, due out at 9:45 a.m. and 10 a.m. ET on Tuesday. Wednesday is a big day with the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, better known as JOLTS, due out in the morning and the minutes of the Fed’s latest policy meeting set to come out in the afternoon. They’re also looking forward to Friday’s December jobs report, the final employment report the Fed will have to consider before its next meeting on Feb. 1. There are also several speeches by Fed presidents scheduled Thursday and Friday. Markets in the Asia-Pacific traded mixed to commence the first trading week for the year. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 fell 1.31% to 6,946.2 on its first trading session of 2023. South Korea’s Kospi also fell 0.31 to 2,218.68 – the Kosdaq gained 0.51% to 674.95in Asia’s afternoon session. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index traded 1.71% higher in its final hour of trade, leading gains in the region while the Shanghai Composite in mainland rose 0.88% to 3,116.51 and the Shenzhen Component gained 0.92% to 11,117.13. Oil prices edged lower on Tuesday in volatile trade as weak demand data from China and a gloomy economic outlook weighed. Brent crude futures fell $1.12, or 1.3%, to $84.79 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was down $1.04, or 1.3%, at $79.22. Both contracts rose by over $1 and Brent dropped $1 in earlier trading. The price of gold notched a six-month high early on Tuesday, and analysts believe the rally has further to go in 2023. Spot gold peaked just below $1,850 per troy ounce in the early hours, before easing off to trade around $1,834 per ounce by late-morning in Europe. U.S. gold futures were up 0.8% at $1,840.50.
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