Us stocks likely to fall on Friday as traders await Fed decision

Us stocks likely to fall on Friday as traders await Fed decision

The U.S. equity futures point to a lower open as traders wait for a decision on economic stimulus at the end of the Federal Reserve's final meeting of the year.

The major futures indexes suggested a decline of 0.3% across the board after losses from the previous session.

When the Fed meeting ends, policymakers expect to speed up the process for trimming bond purchases, which have helped keep interest rates low and support the stock market and the economy. Investors are watching the central bank for any statements on how soon it might raise interest rates in 2022.

Chairman Powell is expected to hold a 2: 30 pm ET press conference.

Oil fell over 1% to $69 per barrel.

Apple is in focus in stocks with shares on the cusp of pushing the company past the $3 trillion mark.

Lowe's home improvement retailer Lowe's said full year sales will be $94 billion to $97 billion, with the lower range below analyst forecasts.

Consumer spending for November is on the economic docket, starting with a November report. Retail sales jumped 0.8% month-over-month, less than half of October s steeper than expected 1.7% surge, according to economists surveyed by Refinitiv. Spending in November was up 0.9% compared to 1.7% the previous month, despite the absence of the automotive component.

The New York Federal Reserve will release a key regional manufacturing report. The Empire State Manufacturing Survey is expected to fall to 25.0 in December from a much stronger than expected print of 30.9 the previous month. More manufacturers say business conditions are improving rather than worsening because of a number above zero.

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Import and export prices for November will be released. After a slightly larger than expected increase of 1.2% in October, imported goods were likely to increase by 0.7% month-over-month. Expectations for export prices to increase by 0.5% in November are well below the 1.5% spike of the previous month.

The National Association of Homebuilders released its sentiment index for December later in the morning. It's expected to hold steady at 83, eight points above a 13 month low of 75 in August due to a surge in materials costs and home prices.

London's FTSE was down 0.3% in Europe, Germany's DAX added 0.3% and France's CAC gained 0.6%.

In Asia, the stock market was mostly lower on Wednesday after the new U.S. data showed inflation is still high.

China reported that retail sales fell by 3.9% in November from a year earlier in the year, compared to a 4.9% increase in October. Industrial production picked up a bit, growing 3.8% from a year earlier, compared to October's 3.5%.