Stock Market Today: Stock Futures Slip; Inflation Data and Fed Decision This Week; Macy’s, Cigna, and Other Premarket Movers; Bitcoin; and More

U.S. stock futures paused Monday on the back of a six-week winning streak with investors bracing for a busy few days of economic data and the latest monetary policy decision from the Federal Reserve.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained less than 10 points, or less than 0.1%, after the index rallied 130 points on Friday to finish at 36,247. Futures for the S&P 500—which closed last week at a yearly high—slipped less than 0.1%, with contracts tracking the Nasdaq Composite down 0.1%.

Recent signs of waning inflation and slowing growth have pushed investors to rapidly adjust their expectations for interest rates, with bets on rate cuts next year helping the S&P 500 on Friday cap its longest streak of weekly wins since late 2019. This week is jammed with more macroeconomic catalysts that could advance—or disrupt—the narrative that borrowing costs will soon come down significantly, with markets currently pricing in the first rate cut from the Fed as soon as March.

“It’s hard to see how the week could be much busier,” said Jim Reid, a strategist at Deutsche Bank. “It’s a toss-up as to whether the FOMC or the U.S. CPI will be the most important event of the week.”

Indeed, Tuesday brings both the consumer-price index (CPI) for November, a critical reading of inflation, as well as the start of the Fed’s two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting. The FOMC’s decision on interest rates will culminate with a press conference from Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Wednesday.

Other potentially market-moving catalysts include two U.S. Treasury auctions and the New York Fed’s survey of consumer expectations in the day ahead. Later in the week are the producer-price index (PPI) inflation reading on Wednesday, and U.S. retail sales on Thursday alongside rate decisions in the U.K. and eurozone. Friday ushers in a spate of global purchasing-managers’ indexes (PMIs) and a data dump out of China.

China was dampening sentiment somewhat on Monday after November CPI data printed at negative 0.5% year over year, below expectations of a 0.2% decline as deflation accelerated by the fastest in three years. Worries over a slowdown in the world’s second-largest economy have rattled global markets in recent months, and the latest Chinese inflation data have done little to improve the mood.

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