U.S. Stocks May See Further Downside In Early Trading

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Stocks are likely to move to the downside in early trading on Friday, extending the pullback seen over the past several sessions. The major index futures are currently pointing to a lower open for the markets, with the Dow futures down by 131 points.

Concerns about the possibility of tighter monetary policy triggering a global recession are likely to continue to weigh on the markets.

Central banks from around the world have signaled their intent to continue to raising interest rates in an effort to fight inflation while acknowledging they can't guarantee a "soft landing" for the economy.

A steep drop by shares of Micron Technology (MU) is likely to weigh on the semiconductor sector, with the chipmaker tumbling by 4.5 percent in pre-market trading.

The slump by Micron comes after the company reported better than expected fiscal third quarter earnings but provided disappointing revenue guidance.

Overall trading activity may be somewhat subdued, however, as some traders look to get a head start on the long Fourth of July weekend.

Shortly after the start of trading, the Institute for Supply Management is due to release its report on manufacturing activity in the month of June.

The ISM's manufacturing PMI is expected to dip to 54.9 in June from 56.1 in May, although a reading above 50 would still indicate growth.

The Commerce Department is also scheduled to release its report on construction spending in the month of May. Construction spending is expected to rise by 0.4 percent in May after edging up by 0.2 percent in April.

Stocks fluctuated after an early sell-off on Thursday but maintained a negative bias throughout the session. The major averages all finished the day notably lower after ending Wednesday's trading narrowly mixed.

After falling nearly 600 points in early trading, the Dow regained some ground but still closed down 253.88 points or 0.8 percent at 30,775.43. The Nasdaq also tumbled 149.16 points or 1.3 percent to 11,028.74, while the S&P 500 slumped 33.45 points or 0.9 percent to 3,785.38.

The steep drop on the day capped off the worst first half for the S&P 500 since 1970, with the index plummeting by 20.6 percent.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Friday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index dove by 1.7 percent, while China's Shanghai Composite Index dipped by 0.3 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets are turning in a lackluster performance on the day. While the French CAC 40 Index is just above the unchanged line, the German DAX Index is down by 0.2 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index is down by 0.3 percent.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are surging $3.12 to $108.88 a barrel after plunging $4.02 to $105.76 a barrel on Thursday. Meanwhile, after falling $10.20 to $1,807.30 an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are tumbling $22.40 to $1,784.90 an ounce.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 135.36 yen versus the 135.72 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Thursday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.0418 compared to yesterday's $1.0484.

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