Stocks edge higher as Wall Street tries to build on a three-day winning streak

Stocks edge higher as Wall Street tries to build on a three-day winning streak

Futures contracts tied to the major U.S. stock indexes rose slightly early Thursday after Wall Street notched a three-day winning streak.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures gained 40 points. S&P 500 futures edged up 0.2% and Nasdaq 100 futures climbed 0.4%.

Apple rose 2% in premarket trading after CNBC reported that it is close to finalizing a deal with Hyundai-Kia to produce driverless cars. News that the two may be close to a deal comes after Hyundai said in January that it was in preliminary talks with the iPhone maker to develop a car.

Shares of EBay jumped more than 10% in early trading after beating on both the top and bottom lines and issuing a rosier-than-expected forecast for the first quarter.

PayPal gained nearly 6% after better-than-expected quarterly results, while Qualcomm slipped more than 6% after reporting revenues below consensus estimates for its fiscal first quarter.

A better-than-expected jobless claims report helped boost sentiment. First-time claims for unemployment insurance totaled 779,000 for the week ended Jan. 30, below the 830,000 estimate from economists surveyed by Dow Jones.

The moves in futures followed three straight positive sessions for the major averages. So far this week, the blue-chip Dow has gained 2.5%, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq have risen 3.1% and 4.1%, respectively.

The economic recovery and market performance have tracked the severity of Covid-19 in the U.S., with some strategists saying the rollout of vaccines could lead to higher interest rates if not outperformance in cyclical or bank stocks.

“Covid vaccine sentiment is still very low. That will improve as investors understand that vaccines will give you either 1) immunity or 2) mild reaction (severity low),” Evercore ISI strategist Dennis DeBusschere wrote in an email on Wednesday.

“As investors and society at large realize low severity is really important, vaccine sentiment will improve and [Treasury] yields will have another gap higher,” he added.

The yield on the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury note rose about 3 basis points on Wednesday to 1.14%.

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