On Wednesday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he and congressional leaders were “far apart” on new aid for the struggling U.S. economy. Consumer spending, the main U.S. economic engine, weakened after earlier additional unemployment benefits expired.
Record daily infection figures in Germany, the Czech Republic and Italy added to fears on Thursday that Europe is running out of chances to control its latest coronavirus outbreak. France has set a 9 p.m. curfew for many of its biggest cities as governments across the continent take increasingly tough action.
Some UK cities, including London are expected to face tighter restrictions.
In the U.S., Investors will get the latest reading on the labor market with the weekly report on jobless claims. The Labor Department is expected to say the number of claims for unemployment benefits declined to 825,000 last week, down 15,000 from the previous week’s tally of 840,000.
There will be two reports on manufacturing with the Philly Fed’s October index of manufacturing activity for eastern Pennsylvania, southern Jersey and Delaware. The report’s reading is expected to come in at 14, down a point from the prior month.
The New York Fed will deliver its Empire State Manufacturing Survey for October. Watch for a 2-point decline to a reading of 15 from 17 the prior month. A reading above zero means that more manufacturers say business conditions are improving rather than worsening.
In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude dropped $1.04 to $40.01 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, declined $1.01 to $42.32 per barrel in London.