Job Openings, Business Optimism, Crude Stockpile: 3 Things to Watch

© Reuters.

By Dhirendra Tripathi — Stocks struggled to find direction for much of the trading session on Monday, as both cyclicals and growth stocks failed to draw investor appetite ahead of key data due later this week.

Consumer inflation data is coming on Thursday. Inflation remains a sensitive topic as investors fear price pressures could force the Federal Reserve to tighten aggressively, potentially risking a recession.

The weaker jobs report last Friday, however, confirmed expectations the Fed is unlikely to back off from its bond purchases sooner than expected.

Cyclicals stocks like materials and industrials – which tend to move in tandem with the economy – were the day’s worst performers despite Wall Street’s bullish view on the sectors.

One of the biggest moves came in shares of Biogen Inc (NASDAQ:), which popped more than 50% in the early afternoon after the Food and Drug Administration announced approval for the pharma’s Alzheimer’s drug, the first approval of a drug to treat the illness in nearly 20 years.

Other pharma stocks rose, as well, including Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE:), which has its own Alzheimer’s treatment awaiting approval. 

Here are three things that could affect markets tomorrow.

1. JOLTs

Data on are due out Tuesday. The number of job openings at the end of April is seen making a new high of 8.3 million, according to analysts tracked by, up from 8.12 million on the last business day of March, which was also a record. The data will be released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics at 10:00 AM ET (1400 GMT).

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2. Small business outlook

Many companies have complained they can’t find workers as they reopen, but that’s not stopping small businesses. The Index in the U.S. for April was 99.8. Data for the month of May will be released Tuesday at 6:00 AM ET by the National Federation of Independent Business.

3. Oil stockpiles

The price of U.S. benchmark is close to $70 a barrel and the latest weekly crude inventory data could influence the price more. On Tuesday the petroleum industry issues its report for the last week, ahead of the government data that comes out Wednesday morning. s weekly crude oil report showed a draw of 5.36 million barrels for the week ended May 27. American Petroleum Institute will release data for the week ended June 3 at 4.30 PM ET.


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