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Futures muted, Nvidia’s market cap jumps above $3 trillion – what’s moving markets



1. Futures Muted

U.S. stock futures showed minimal movement following Wednesday’s rally in the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite. By 03:28 ET (07:28 GMT), S&P 500 futures and Dow futures were largely unchanged, while Nasdaq 100 futures rose by 26 points, or 0.1%.

The previous session saw the S&P 500 climb 1.18% to 5,354.03, and the Nasdaq Composite advance 1.95% to 17,186.38. The Dow Jones Industrial Average also increased by 0.3% to 38,807.33.

This rally was supported by a drop in the U.S. 10-year Treasury yield to a two-month low, following weaker-than-expected private payrolls data. Additionally, job openings fell to their lowest in over three years in April, indicating a softening U.S. labor market.

Reduced demand for workers could ease inflationary pressures, increasing hopes that the Federal Reserve might lower interest rates from their more than two-decade highs later this year.

2. Nvidia Surpasses Apple as World’s Second Most Valuable Company

Nvidia’s market capitalization exceeded $3 trillion on Wednesday, making it the world’s second most valuable company, overtaking Apple. The surge is driven by high demand for Nvidia’s AI-optimized chips, fueled by a rise in AI applications.

Nvidia recently announced its new “Rubin” chip, just months after its previous launch, aiming for a “one-year” release cadence to stay ahead of competitors like AMD, Intel, and in-house processors from companies like Microsoft and Google.

In May, Nvidia reported a 262% increase in revenue and announced a 10-for-one stock split effective June 7.

Apple, expected to reveal more about its AI plans at an upcoming developers conference, has so far been relatively quiet on its AI ambitions. However, CEO Tim Cook recently highlighted AI as a “key opportunity.”

3. Lululemon Shares Jump After-Hours

Lululemon Athletica’s shares rose by over 9% in extended trading after the athletic apparel retailer posted better-than-expected first-quarter results. The company reported earnings per share of $2.54, surpassing Wall Street’s $2.38 estimate, and net revenue of $2.21 billion, above the projected $2.19 billion.

Strength in mainland China, where same-store sales increased by 33%, offset flat sales in the Americas. Analysts noted Lululemon’s strategic expansion in China to mitigate sluggish U.S. demand.

Lululemon, which has seen a 39% decline in share price this year, also announced a $1 billion increase in its stock buyback program.

4. ECB Decision Looms

The European Central Bank (ECB) is expected to cut interest rates from record highs during its Thursday meeting. With eurozone inflation easing towards the ECB’s 2% target, policymakers have hinted at this move.

ECB President Christine Lagarde noted that price pressures are “under control,” and Chief Economist Philip Lane suggested recent data supports reducing restrictions.

Investors anticipate a quarter-point cut to the ECB’s benchmark deposit rate, currently at an all-time high of 4%. However, there is uncertainty about future rate cuts, with ING analysts expressing doubt about significant announcements on the topic.

5. Crude Inches Higher

Crude prices edged higher on Thursday, but are still on track for significant weekly losses. By 03:24 ET, U.S. crude futures (WTI) rose 0.7% to $74.60 per barrel, while Brent crude climbed 0.6% to $78.88 per barrel.

Despite these gains, both contracts are heading for weekly declines of around 4%, influenced by OPEC+’s decision to allow for the gradual unwinding of voluntary output cuts starting in October.

Additionally, U.S. crude stocks increased by 1.2 million barrels in the week ending May 31, contrary to expectations of a 2.3 million barrel draw, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

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