Watch For:

ECB Vice-President Luis de Guindos speaks at Encuentro de Economia event, organized by FundaciÃ(3) Internacional Olof Palme; Germany GDP, Ifo Business Climate Index; trading updates from Sberbank, Compass Group

Opening Call:

Stock futures were broadly higher. Asian stock benchmarks were mostly lower; Treasury yields rose; the dollar weakened; while oil futures were mixed and gold gained.


European stock futures were broadly higher early Friday in muted trading given the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday overnight and mild gains in U.S. stock-index futures likely lending support.

Trading in the U.S. on Friday will be limited, with stock markets closing at 1 p.m. ET and bond markets shutting an hour later.

Survey data due Friday will offer a read on the health of the U.S. manufacturing and services sectors, while early reports from retailers about Black Friday traffic will also be in focus.

Meanwhile, flash estimate purchasing managers' data Thursday showed that the eurozone's economy has likely slipped into a mild recession, while the U.K. is performing slightly better.

The figures confirm views that the European Central Bank is unlikely to raise rates any further.


The dollar retreated early Friday.

Market volatility is typically low, given that the U.S. is celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday, Matt Simpson, market analyst at City Index and;!!F0Stn7g!DxA7heMfy5k0UIjWYzKqeb5AtlP8ndTcJ_zCqwUcbbmmbGWUIFDU4_6jnXcI3TMD0WZD-5qLG5mrUqI2oqYjGQk_R9Wvru8zEU2_8MtJbY0$ , said.

This has led to the usual tight ranges on low trading volumes, Simpson said.

However, if the USD Index retains its seasonal tendency, it has a greater probability of trading higher over the next two sessions after Thanksgiving, Simpson added.


A U.S. recession could turn fortunes for the Japanese yen, reinforcing its safe-haven status, Amundi Investment Institute said.

"On the currency front the game changer is if there is a U.S. recession which would see the Fed pivot and the yen display its safe-haven nature, " Amundi said.


Treasury yields were higher early Friday.

The U.S. bond market will shut early for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Global bond markets have repriced significantly over the past two years because of the transition to the new era of higher rates, leaving bond valuations now close to fair, Vanguard said.

Term premia--added compensation investors demand for holding longer-dated debt rather than shorter-dated debt--have increased as well, driven by elevated inflation and fiscal and monetary outlook uncertainty, Vanguard said.

"Despite the potential for near-term volatility, we believe this rise in interest rates is the single best economic and financial development in 20 years for long-term investors," it said.


Oil futures were mixed as investors remain unsettled following a decision by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies to delay a much-anticipated meeting to Nov. 30.

UBS analysts said they expect the oil cartel will reach an agreement on cuts at the meeting, but prices would stay volatile in the near term.

Citi analysts expect Saudi Arabia will roll its 1 million barrel per day voluntary cut through the first quarter of next year, and the rest of the members will broadly agree to existing quotas through 2024.

"Having said this, the likelihood of a bearish outcome from the meeting appears to have risen given the meeting delay and potential broader disagreements," they said.


Gold ticked higher amid a weaker USD.

It also appears to have some more favorable U.S. economic data on its side and a slightly less "combative" Fed, Oanda said.

However, HSBC sees only a 24% chance of the Fed cutting rates by March, which would boost gold through dollar weakness but adds that until those rate cuts come to fruition, it is unlikely gold will rally.


Copper prices were lower. Prices were likely weighed by a jump higher in LME inventories, Saxo Markets said.

The general risk-off sentiment is also underpinning amid a sell-off in bonds and European PMIs still showing recession concerns, it said.


Iron ore prices were lower after hitting a nine-month high Thursday.

ANZ analysts said that although steel production curbs could be reduced further, northern China is headed into winter which, along with weak construction activity, could weaken steel demand.


Oil-and-Gas Companies Account for Only 1% of Clean-Energy Investment Globally, IEA Says

As the world prepares to travel to the COP28 climate summit, hosted by the United Arab Emirates, a new report warns that the fossil-fuel industry isn't investing enough in decarbonization.

Despite earning average annual revenues of $3.5 trillion since 2018, oil-and-gas companies are spending just 2.5% of their investment on clean energy, which is about 1% of the global clean-energy spend, according to the International Energy Agency. And 60% of that comes from just four companies out of thousands of producers.

U.K. Consumer Confidence Rebounds Ahead of Key Holiday Season

U.K. consumer confidence recovered in November, according to a survey published Friday, fueling hopes of a rebound in spending as the key festive shopping season draws near.

Confidence among British consumers rose six points to a level of minus 24, reversing much of the previous month's drop, according to an index compiled by consumer-research firm GfK.

Four Years, 30,000 Kids, Countless Bricks: Inside the Quest for the Next Hit Lego Set

BILLUND, Denmark-In its quest for its next hit, Lego asked over 30,000 children for help.

It made giant posters of its ideas and led children on what it called "gallery walks" to see what they thought. Sometimes, ideas writers and artists had spent months on would get savaged.

Families of Hostages Held in Gaza Endure Agonizing Wait

TEL AVIV-Neta Heiman Mina awoke Wednesday morning to news that Israel had reached a deal to release hostages held by Hamas, bringing some small measure of relief and hope that her 84-year-old mother might be among those freed.

By the evening, she was tempering her expectations as media outlets started reporting that the deal might be delayed. A call from a military liaison officer, who is assigned to give her updates, confirmed her fear.

EU Helps Finland Secure Its Borders Amid Migrant Influx From Russia

The European Union will help Finland bolster its borders following a recent surge of migrants trying to enter the country from Russia, whom Helsinki has accused of facilitating their passage.

Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, said Thursday it would send 50 border-guard officers and other staff, along with equipment such as patrol cars, to bolster Finland's border-control activities. The reinforcement, including surveillance officers, support for registering migrants, document experts and interpreters, was expected to be on the ground as soon as next week, the agency said. Frontex currently has 10 officers working at the Finnish borders, it said.

OpenAI Got Its CEO Back. What Happens Next?

Sam Altman is back at the helm of OpenAI, days after the board abruptly ousted him. Almost everything else is still in flux.

The deal struck Tuesday night to restore Altman as CEO is a long way from the ultimate goal he wanted to achieve heading into a weekend of intense negotiations. He had lobbied for an entirely new slate of directors-built on the ashes of the directors who fired him-and wanted to rejoin the board again himself, according to people familiar with the matter.

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Expected Major Events for Friday

00:01/UK: Nov UK Consumer Confidence Survey

06:00/FIN: Oct PPI

07:00/GER: 3Q GDP - Detailed breakdown

07:00/SWE: Oct PPI

07:30/HUN: Oct Employment & unemployment

08:00/CZE: Nov Business cycle survey (consumer/business confidence)

08:00/SPN: Oct PPI

09:00/GER: Nov Ifo Business Climate Index

09:00/POL: Oct Unemployment

09:00/ICE: Oct PPI

10:00/LUX: Sep Trade

11:00/IRL: Oct WPI

14:00/BEL: Nov Business Confidence Survey

15:59/UKR: Oct PPI

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This article is a text version of a Wall Street Journal newsletter published earlier today.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

11-24-23 0015ET