Megacaps, chip stocks lift futures before Powell testimony

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U.S. stock index futures rose on Tuesday, driven by gains in megacap technology and semiconductor stocks.

This continues Monday’s rally, where the S&P 500 and Nasdaq closed at record highs, fueled by a surge in chip stocks.

Investors are now focusing on Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell’s upcoming Congressional testimony for insights on the future of monetary policy.

The Philadelphia semiconductor index reached a two-week high on Monday, contributing to the market’s positive performance.

Powell’s testimony, set to begin at 10 a.m. ET, will be closely watched for indications of the Fed’s stance on recent economic data showing a slowdown in the labor market and other potential economic weaknesses.

Analysts at Unicredit expect Powell’s comments to be balanced or slightly dovish, given signs of disinflation and gradual economic activity slowdown.

Market expectations for rate cuts have increased, with a nearly 74% chance of a 25 basis points cut at the Fed’s September meeting, up from under 50% a month ago.

Megacap stocks like Microsoft, Amazon, Alphabet, and Meta Platforms saw gains between 0.3% and 0.5%, reflecting optimism ahead of Powell’s testimony.

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