Stock futures mixed as Fed tapering, tax concerns weigh

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U.S. stock futures pointed to a mixed open as investors remained wary of the Federal Reserve's tapering schedule and tax hikes. 

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures slipped 26 points, or 0.08%, while S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq 100 futures ticked up 0.03% and 0.1%, respectively. 

The Dow and the S&P fell for the sixth time in seven sessions on Tuesday amid concerns a slowdown in inflation could cause the Fed to begin tapering later this year. Investors also fretted over proposed tax hikes that would help pay for President Biden’s $3.5 trillion spending package.

In stocks, Microsoft Corp.’s board of directors authorized a stock buyback program of $60 billion and raised the company’s quarterly dividend by 11% to 62 cents per share. 

Wynn Resorts Ltd., Las Vegas Sands Corp. and MGM Resorts International remained under pressure after Macau’s government tightened regulations over casino operators. Shares of the three companies lost between 3.9% and 11% on Tuesday. 

Coinbase Global Inc. raised the size of its previously announced debt offering by $500 million to about $2 billion. The cryptocurrency exchange operator plans to use the money raised to invest in product development and potential mergers and acquisitions.  

Oil-related companies continued higher as West Texas Intermediate crude oil surged 95 cents to $71.42 a barrel and was on track for its highest close since July 30. 

Gold, meanwhile, slipped $3.20 to $1,803.90.

Overseas markets were mostly lower. 


European bourses were mixed with France’s CAC down 0.56% and Germany’s DAX 40 weaker by 0.24% while Britain’s FTSE 100 edged up 0.07%. 

In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index plunged 1.84%, Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.52% and China’s Shanghai Composite index lost 0.18%. 

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