ISSN: 2056-3736 (Online Version) | 2056-3728 (Print Version)


U.S. stock futures sharply dropped Friday, signaling Wall Street’s major benchmarks were set to extend losses for the week during which equities were rocked and volatility spiked on fears about slowing global growth.

Doubling an earlier fall, futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJZ4) fell 117 points, or 0.7%, to 16,493, and those for S&P 500 index (SPZ4) lost 12.3 points, or 0.6%, to 1,912.60. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index (NDZ4) sank 44.75 points, or 1.1%, to 3,925.50.

Fresh in the mind of investors on Friday will be Thursday’s selloff that sent the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) tumbling 335 points, its worst one-day point slide in more than a year. The S&P 500 (SPX) was knocked down by 2.1% and the Nasdaq Composite (RIXF) was kicked lower by 2.2%.

The indexes were each on track for declines of at least 2%.

“Bad economic data is now being viewed as bad and the dovish signals from central banks are now being taken as a sign of weakness rather than a reason to ramp up equities,” wrote Jonathan Sudaria, a dealer at Capital Spreads, in Friday note that highlighted the rout in European stocks spurred by worries about the global economy.

“Going into the weekend with so much uncertainty in the air will only further fuel traders compulsion to get out of risky assets and it would take a miracle for the bulls to salvage anything today,” he wrote.

The widely watched CBOE VIX (VIX) gauge of current fear in the market on Thursday surged 23% to mark its highest level since February.

Data: A report on prices paid for goods imported into the U.S. in September is due at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time. Prices are expected to decline by 0.7%.

At 2 p.m., Richmond Fed President Jeffrey Lacker will speak at the annual meeting of the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges. At the same time, Kansas City Fed President Esther George is scheduled to speak at McCook Community College in McCook, Neb. George isn’t a voting member of the Fed policy committee this year.

Stocks to watch: Tesla Motors Inc. (TSLA) late Thursday unveiled its latest Model S car.

Symantec Corp. (SYMC) shares rose late Thursday following the security software maker’s plan to split in two publicly traded companies.

Juniper Networks Inc. (JNPR) late Thursday warned third-quarter revenue and adjusted earnings are likely to come in below its previous estimates.

Alpha Pro Tech Ltd. (APT) is up 32% and Lakeland Industries Inc. (LAKE) is up 10% in premarket following gains from Thursday amid rising Ebola outbreak concerns. Alpha Pro Tech’s infection control unit makes face masks and eye shields, while Lakeland makes protective clothing for health care and first responders.

Other markets: Oil futures (CLX4) dropped 1.6%, below $85 a barrel. They finished Thursday’s session at their lowest level since December 2012. Brent futures fell 1.3% to below $90 a barrel. Gold futures (GCZ4) shed $3 an ounce. The dollar (DXY) was slightly higher against its rivals after Thursday’s fall to a fresh three-week low.

In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index and Tokyo’s Nikkei Average fell 1.9% and 1.2%, respectively. The Stoxx Europe 600 was looking at its biggest weekly loss in more than a year.