Futures for U.S. markets pointed strongly southward late Thursday as Hurricane Matthew began to batter the Florida coast, leaving thousands without power ahead of a projected landfall early Friday.
The Dow Jones Industrials were off 0.26%, the S&P 500 0.29% and Nasdaq 0.27% at 9:03 p.m. EDT.
U.S. markets ended mostly flat Thursday as investors await the latest economic indication--the September jobs report--Friday. However, that release may be overshadowed by Hurricane Matthew, which is expected to crash into Cape Canaveral with historic force Friday morning.
The Dow ended Thursday 0.07% lower while the S&P gained 0.05%. Nasdaq pared 0.17%.
Asia had its own set of worries early Friday as traders fretted over an acceleration of the pound's decline to historic lows and the continued ascension of oil prices. The Nikkei in Japan slipped 0.14%, the Kospi in South Korea 0.21% and Australia's ASX 0.34% at 9:33 p.m. EDT.
The pound was off 2.02%, to $1.2364, at 9:24 p.m., its lowest point in decades, after top politicians in Germany and France advocated tough negotiations on the U.K.'s exit from the EU to discourage other countries from following suit.
The yen pared 0.2289% against the dollar at 9:43 p.m. EDT to ¥103.726.
Oil continued to strengthen during the early hours of the week's final trading day with industry standard Brent crude up 3 cents, to $53.54, per barrel and West Texas crude 4 cents higher at $50.48 per barrel at 9:33 p.m. EDT. The prices are futures for delivery in December and November, respectively.
Europe also had a difficult day Thursday with Germany's Dax off 0.16%, the Cac in Paris 0.22% and London's FTSE 0.47%.
Honeywell now expects to earn $1.67 per share vs. its prior expectations of $1.67 to $1.72 per share. Wall Street was looking for earnings of $1.70 per share. The technology and manufacturing company said the updated forecast reflects the separation of its Automation and Control Solutions unit.
In gainers, CIT Group (CIT - Get Report) advanced 7.58%, to $39.16, in extended trading after the Livingston, N.J.-based commercial lender agreed to sell its commercial aircraft leasing business to Avolon, a subsidiary of China's Bohai Capital.
CIT said Avolon would pay $10 billion, allowing it to return $2.98 billion to shareholders and pay annual dividends of $64 million once the deal closes, which is expected in the first three months of 2017.