Stock futures rose for a third straight session as investors increased their bets that lawmakers will agree on additional stimulus to help the struggling U.S. economy.
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Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi spoke late in the afternoon on Thursday to see whether there are real prospects of a "comprehensive bill," according to her spokesperson. Mnuchin said President Trump has an interest in reaching an agreement, the spokesperson added.
Dow Jones Industrial futures were up 132 points, a gain of nearly 0.5%, while NASDAQ Composite and S&P 500 contracts added 0.5% and 0.3%, respectively.
During Pelosi's weekly press conference earlier on Thursday, she said Congress would enact no standalone assistance bill, countering what Trump told FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo a few hours earlier when he said conversations about such bills — rather than comprehensive measures he had nixed earlier in the week — were yielding "productive talks."
European markets were also higher on Friday, with the Stoxx Europe 600 index rising 0.3%, with the German DAX, French CAC 40 and U.K. FTSE 100 also adding to weekly gains.
CHIPS AT THE TABLE
Shares of semiconductor maker NXP Semiconductor Inc. were up more than 5% in early Friday trading after the company raised its outlook for the current quarter. It reported preliminary third-quarter revenue of $2.27 billion, compared to a previous outlook of $2 billion. Analysts had expected sales to come in at $2.01 billion.
Intel competitor Advanced Micro Devices Inc. is in advanced talks to acquire rival Xilinx Inc. for more than $30 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal.
AMD shares, which have risen nearly 75% year-to-date, were off 5% in early trading on Friday, while Xilinx soared 17% on the back of the report.
The London Stock Exchange Group PLC said it would sell its entire holding of Borsa Italiana to Euronext NV for $5.1 billion.
The economic calendar is light on Friday, as wholesale inventories for August will be the only piece of data released. Economists are expecting a rise of 1% for the month, up from a decline of 0.3% in the prior reading.
West Texas Intermediate crude oil declined nearly 1% to $40.80 a barrel, while gold regained the psychologically important $1,900 level, adding 1.3% on Friday.