US equity futures were flat in trading overnight after major averages retreated, albeit near record highs, on Wednesday.
Dow futures fell only 20 points. S&P 500 futures gained 0.05% and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 0.14%.
Nvidia shares popped into extended trading after breaking both the upper and lower lines of its quarterly results. Cisco Systems shares went the other way due to lower revenue forecasts and a shortfall.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 211 points on Wednesday, dragged down by a 4.7% loss in Visa shares. The S&P 500 plunged 0.26%. The Nasdaq Composite was down 0.33%, despite most mega-cap tech companies closing in the green.
The benchmark Russell 2000 small cap was the relative underperformance on Wednesday, losing 1.2%.
“Recent economic reports remain strong, but today’s stock action highlights that it is already discounting another round of covid,” said Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist for Leuthold Group.
“Covid concerns also caused the yield on 10-year bonds to fall for the first time in 6 days and kept downward pressure on commodity prices, including another significant drop in crude oil prices. If inflation continues to rise as another surge of Covid blocks real economic activity again, we might find out how the stock market is handling a pseudo-stagflationary episode, “he added.
Still, stocks are hovering near their all-time highs. The Dow Jones is 1.7% off its all-time high and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite are 0.6% and 0.8% from their record highs, respectively.
A string of retail profits moved several names on Wednesday. Lowe’s and TJX Companies advanced after posting better-than-expected results. Target stocks fell despite strong earnings.
Investors expect more retail earnings on Thursday with reports from Macy’s and Kohl’s before the bell. Alibaba and JD.com are also reporting ahead of the opening bell. Applied Materials and Palo Alto Networks reports later Thursday.
The Labor Department will release data on last week’s jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. Thursday. Economists polled by Dow Jones expect initial jobless claims to fall to 260,000 for the week ending Nov. 13, from 267,000 claims the week before.