Stock futures were flat on Thursday night ahead of the final trading day of 2021.
Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 0.03%, while S&P 500 futures inched 0.01% higher and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 0.02%.
All three of the major averages faded into the close in regular trading Thursday, after trading slightly higher throughout the rest of the session. The Dow shed about 90 points, or 0.3%, to snap a six-day win streak. The S&P 500 dipped 0.3%, falling less than 1% from its record, which it hit in the previous session. And the Nasdaq Composite lost 0.2%.
There was little in news or economic data driving markets on Thursday, the second to last trading session of the year, and investors may be looking past the moves of the day as all of the major averages are still on track to finish both the week and the month higher.
“These days matter a little bit less,” Sylvia Jablonski, chief investment officer at Defiance ETFs, told CNBC’s “Closing Bell” Thursday. “We’re at the end of the year, it’s a holiday – liquidity wanes a little bit, but we have a strong economy … there are a lot of positive sides to the market next year.”
However, market bull Chris Harvey, Wells Fargo Securities head of equity strategy, said he’s turning cautious looking to 2022.
“We’ve been bull at year-end, we thought there’d be a melt-up, but now it’s time as we look at the landscape for more sobering thoughts,” he told CNBC’s “Fast Money.” “There’s this pervasive mentality that the market can bend, but can’t break. We do expect a 10% pullback next year either in 2Q or in the beginning of the summertime.”
He added, “We’re late in the cycle … we expect to see multiple compression, whether it’s due to deceleration of growth, the Fed getting more aggressive – or maybe what we’re going to see is a peaking of pricing. That can lead to a peaking multiples, and of course, a peaking of margins. So we’re a lot more conservative this year. We want people to think about the risk side of the equation first and then the return side.”
Cruise line stocks took a hit on Thursday after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended Americans avoid taking cruises, whether they’re vaccinated or not. Norwegian Cruise Line fell 1.4%.
Other travel stocks rebounded after a week of choppy trading driven by various development concerning the omicron variant. Penn National Gaming gained 4.4%. Wynn Resorts ticked up more than 2%.
Jobless claims for last week came in lower than expected at 198,000, the Labor Department reported Thursday. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had projected 205,000.
There is no economic data expected on Friday.