The Justice Department late Wednesday appointed former FBI Director Robert S. Mueller to oversee its investigation into ties between Russia and the 2016 U.S. presidential election, but futures markets were muted in response. 

Just after 10 p.m. Eastern, Dow futures were up 0.10%, while S&P and Nasdaq futures were up 0.18% and 0.29%, respectively.

Gold was up 0.08%, to 1,259, while crude pulled back from earlier gains to edge down 0.37%.

In Asia, markets were mixed to lower. The Nikkei was down 1.82%, Shanghai was off 0.22%, and the Hang Seng was down 0.54%.

On Wednesday, the S&P finished down 1.8%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.8%, or 372 points, and the Nasdaq slid 2.6%. The S&P 500's loss was the worst since Sept. 9.

With Mueller's appointment, "odds are the uncertainty noted by the move in the VIX will continue as investors question the timing of Trump's tax reform and other stimulative measures," said Chris Versace, who writes for TheStreet.com's Trifecta Stocks. "While we expect a modest inventory-led rebound in GDP for the current quarter, with Congress holding just 43 session days in May, June and July, we suspect timing expectations will soon shift to 1Q 2018 being the soonest that team Trump is able to get those measures into action."

Add in the November elections, Versace said in email comments, and "odds are GDP expectations that were built on the Trump Trade will need to be revised lower, which in turn should lead investors to recalculate earnings expectations for the S&P 500. We see this resulting in the market giving back more of its Trump-inspired gains, but for us that means opportunity to put capital to work."

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