U.S. stock index futures edged higher Monday, pointing to more gains on Wall Street after a jobs data-led rally in the previous session, as traders priced in a higher chance of the Federal Reserve cutting interest rates this year.

The benchmark S&P 500 and the blue-chip Dow closed at three-week highs on Friday after data showed U.S. job growth slowed more than expected in April, taking pressure off the U.S. central bank to keep rates higher for longer.

Traders are currently pricing in rate cuts worth 48 basis points from the Fed by the end of 2024, with the first cut expected in September or November, according to LSEG’s rate probability app. In recent weeks, traders had priced in just one cut due to signs of sticky inflation.

“In the near term, even as high for longer narrative remains, the fear for higher for longer dissipates. This can be seen as a relief for risk proxies,” Christopher Wong, FX strategist at OCBC Global Markets, said in a note.

U.S. stock indexes appear to have stabilized after a rocky April following some hotter inflation data, as a much better-than-expected first-quarter earnings season and hopes of U.S. monetary policy easing draw buyers back into the market.

The Fed last week left interest rates unchanged and signaled it was leaning toward eventual reductions in borrowing costs, but repeated that it wants to gain “greater confidence” that inflation will continue to fall before cutting rates.

Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin and his New York counterpart John Williams are scheduled to speak later in the day, kicking off speeches from a host of U.S. central bank officials this week.

Key data releases this week will include weekly jobless claims and U.S. consumer sentiment data for May.

With the earnings season in full swing, markets will watch out for quarterly numbers from major firms including Walt Disney , Uber and Arm Holdings later this week.

Of the 397 firms in the S&P 500 that have reported earnings as of Friday, 76.8% have reported earnings above analyst estimates, compared with the long-term average of 66.7%, as per LSEG data.

At 07:19 a.m. ET, Dow E-minis were up 123 points, or 0.32%, S&P 500 E-minis were up 17.25 points, or 0.33% and Nasdaq 100 E-minis were up 41.25 points, or 0.23%.

Apple dipped 0.5% after the value of Berkshire’s stake in the iPhone maker fell 22% to $135.4 billion as of March 31, from $174.3 billion at the end of 2023.

Paramount Global added 3% after the media company ended its exclusive negotiations with Skydance Media without a deal, allowing the special committee to entertain other offers from rival bidders.

Perficient jumped 52.3% after Swedish private equity firm EQT AB said it would take the U.S.-based digital consultancy firm private in an all-cash deal valued at about $3 billion.


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