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Dow Futures Wobble, Bed Bath & Beyond Soars—and What Else Is Happening in the Stock Market Today

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Wall Street continues to hotly anticipate Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s speech on Friday.

Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

The stock market looks set for another quiet day Wednesday as investors continue to look ahead to the economic symposium in Jackson Hole.

Dow Jones Industrial Average
futures have advanced 26 points, or 0.1%.

&P 500
futures have risen 0.2%, and

Nasdaq Composite
futures have gained 0.1%.

“Markets continued to stabilize with focus remaining on the Jackson Hole Economic Symposium later in the week,” writes Sevens Reports’ Tom Essaye. 

Jackson Hole often gets used by central-bank chiefs to offer market-moving views, whether Ben Bernanke’s announcement of a second round of quantitative easing in 2009 or Jerome Powell’s reassessment of inflation targeting in 2020. Now, investors are wondering whether the Fed Chair will sound more hawkish, in contrast to the minutes from the July meeting, or reaffirm a more dovish bent.

Investors will have some more data to ponder as they try to guess what the Fed may do. Durable goods orders are due this morning, and economists are expecting those to have risen 1% month over month for July, which would be down from the 2% June result. Pending home sales, meanwhile, are expected to have declined 3% month over month for July after having declined 8.7% in June, following the decline in new home sales that was revealed in a release on Tuesday.

These declines wouldn’t be such a sorry sight for the stock market. It would confirm that the Federal Reserve’s recent interest rate hikes—and higher mortgage rates—might be working to cool down demand. This would then confirm that the Fed could slow down the pace of interest rate hikes, which it said it is likely to do

Now, interest rates and stocks have not done much in the past couple of days as Wall Street awaits the Fed’s annual Jackson Hole meeting Friday. The major indexes dipped slightly Tuesday and are flat Wednesday. The 2 Year Treasury yield, which attempts to forecast the level of the federal-funds rate a couple of years from the present, has remained just above 3.3% all week, still below its multiyear high of 3.4% hit in mid-June. 

Don’t expect too much action, though. That should come when Powell finally takes the lectern on Friday,

Here are two stocks on the move Wednesday:


Bed Bath & Beyond

(ticker: BBBY), whose shares have been on a roller coaster in recent weeks, has jumped 12% in U.S. premarket trading after the company secured a loan to build cash and pay down debt.


Nordstrom

(JWN) has shed 14% in following the release of the retailer’s latest quarterly earnings late Tuesday.


Nordstrom

 slashed its full-year outlook in a sign that higher-income shoppers are reducing purchases.


Intuit

(INTU) has gained 5.9% after the company reported better-than-expected earnings.


Toll Brothers

(TOL) has dropped 2.6% after the home builder lowered its full-year deliveries guidance.

Advance Auto Parts (AAP) has fallen 6.8% after its earnings and sales missed Wall Street guidance.

Write to Jack Denton at jack.denton@dowjones.com

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