Investors were focusing on earnings Thursday, scrutinizing fourth-quarter results from Citigroup (C) and Goldman Sachs (G)S, and Best Buy's (BBY) holiday same-store sales. Jobless claims and consumer price index reports did little to change expectations of a continuation of the Federal Reserve's plan to taper stimulus at a $10 billion monthly pace and a prolonged period of a Fed funds rate at record lows.
Futures for the S&P 500 were off 3.25 points, or 3.98 points below fair value, to 1,838.25, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were falling 30 points, or 33.94 points below fair value, to 16,378, Nasdaq futures were down 1.5 points, or 5.89 points below fair value, to 3,596.8.
Best Buy was plunging 28.88% in premarket trading to $26.80 after reporting a U.S. holiday period same-store sales decline of 0.9% vs. expectations for an increase. Citigroup was giving up 3.16% to $53.17 after missing fourth-quarter estimates by a wide margin. Goldman Sachs was rising 0.56% to $179.75 after a mediocre fourth-quarter earnings beat. Intel (INTC) was down 0.07% to $26.65. The chipmaker is forecast to post fourth-quarter earnings of 52 cents a share on revenue of $13.72 billion after the closing bell.
S&P Capital IQ's chief equity strategist Sam Stovall said he thinks the S&P 500 will continue to power to new all-time highs, supported by economic reports. "Stocks remain attractive relative to bonds, in our view," he said.