After showing a lack of direction throughout the previous session, stocks may move to the upside in early trading on Thursday. The major index futures are pointing to a notably higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 53 points.
The upward momentum for the markets comes as traders digest the latest news out of the European Central Bank along with a batch of upbeat U.S. employment data.
Following a monetary policy meeting, the ECB announced its decision to leave interest rates unchanged, although traders were more focused on remarks by ECB President Mario Draghi.
Draghi told a press conference following the meeting that the ECB had agreed on a highly anticipated bond purchasing program that he said would address distortions in the bond markets.
He went on to say that the bond purchasing program would be a "fully effective backstop to prevent potentially destructive scenarios."
The markets may also benefit from the release of a report from Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP) showing stronger than expected U.S. private sector job growth in the month of August.
ADP said private sector employment increased by 201,000 jobs in August following a revised increase of 173,000 jobs in July. Economists had expected employment to increase by about 149,000 jobs compared to the addition of 163,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.
In another upbeat sign for the sluggish labor market, the Labor Department released a separate report showing a bigger than expected drop in first-time claims for unemployment benefits in the week ended September 1st.
by RTT Staff Writer
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