From the wsj’s “Stock Futures Edge Higher in Choppy Trading” posted early Wednesday:
Optimism that vaccines will curtail infection levels and propel the economic rebound next year has bolstered investors’ risk appetite this week.
On the flip side, a litany of concerns including rising Covid-19 cases that are prompting new restrictions on social and business activity, and the halting pace of economic recovery, are weighing on sentiment. Hopes for a large fiscal stimulus package are also ebbing, investors said.
“When you look at the U.S., the prospect for either near-term fiscal policy or sizable medium-term fiscal policy is much reduced,” said James McCormick, a strategist at NatWest Markets. The economic recovery also seems to be slowing during the fourth quarter, he said. “And most importantly, you’ve got a new surge in coronavirus cases that is starting to trigger some new state-by-state lockdowns.”
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on Tuesday also cautioned that the economy faces significant challenges and uncertainty because of the increased spread of the coronavirus. He also said it was too soon to say how a potential vaccine would change the outlook, with the possibility of widespread vaccination still many months away.
My take: Mr. Premarket doesn’t know which way is up this morning.