Futures for U.S. indices were slightly higher late Wednesday as investors look for signs from policymakers about the future of both the economy and the dollar.
The S&p 500 was up 0.02% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average 0.03%. Nasdaq was flat at 9:10 p.m. EST.
Thursday, investors will be watching the confirmation of Steve Mnuchin, President-elect Trump's pick to head the Treasury Department, to see if he supports Trump's abandonment of the strong dollar policy. They also hope to get a better read on how the new administration will approach the economy.
This after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen surprised the market Wednesday by saying 2017 could see a "few" interest rate increases, which investors read as more than two. They were expecting just a pair of rate increases this year.
The Yellen comments left U.S. indices mixed Wednesday, with the S&P up 0.18% and Nasdaq 0.31% higher, while the Dow lost 0.11%. Europe was equally mixed but based on earnings reports rather than central banker statements--Germany's Dax added 0.51%, while the FTSE in London gained 0.58%. In France, the Cac slipped 0.13%.
Asia was mixed in Thursday morning trade with the Nikkei in Japan adding 1.12% on the back of a weaker yen and the ASX in Australia gaining 0.19% at 9:26 p.m. EST. The Kospi in South Korea lost 0.23%, and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong pared 0.31%.
The dollar index added 0.03%, to 101.32, at 9:17 p.m., showing the dollar strengthening against a number of other currencies after Trumps anti-strong dollar stance confused currency traders earlier this week.
In energy, a barrel of industry standard Brent crude changed hands for $54.36 at 9:16 p.m. EST, an increase of 0.82%, while its West Texas counterpart went for $51.47, a gain of 0.76%. Both prices reflect futures for delivery in March and February, respectively.
In after-hours trade, Netflix(NFLX) - Get Report shares streamed up 7.91%, to $143.80, after the online entertainment bulwark reported stronger-than-expected results for the fourth quarter of 2016 and gave an upbeat outlook for the first quarter of 2017.
Following the market close, Netflix posted adjusted earnings of 15 cents per share on revenue of $2.48 billion for the quarter. Analysts surveyed by FactSet were looking for adjusted earnings of 13 cents per share and $2.47 billion in revenue.
The Los Gatos, Calif.-based company said it had 1.93 million new U.S. subscribers during the quarter, easily surpassing Wall Street's expectations for 1.4 million new domestic subscribers. Netflix also saw 5.12 million new international subscribers, which crushed analysts' predictions for 3.7 million new international subscribers.
Action Alerts PLUS, which Cramer co-manages as a charitable trust, has no positions in the stocks mentioned.