* Investors look to payrolls data due on Good Friday
* Crude oil dips, could pressure energy stocks
* Micron drops in premarket after revenue outlook
* Futures down: Dow 43 pts, S&P 6.5 pts, Nasdaq 16.25 pts
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, April 2 (Reuters) – S&P Futures were lower on Thursday, as investors held off on making big bets ahead of a critical payrolls report that will be released on Friday, a market holiday.
* Trading could be volatile as market participants will be unable to trade off the March nonfarm payrolls report until Monday, as financial markets will be closed for the Good Friday holiday. Some traders may close out positions or adjust their portfolios ahead of time.
* The release of the jobs report has only coincided with Good Friday four times since 1999, according to data from Bespoke, most recently in 2012. Analysts expect 245,000 jobs to have been added in the month, down from 295,000 in February.
* Economic data has been weak recently, with reads on both private sector employment and manufacturing coming in below expectations on Wednesday. While those point to slowing growth, a weak payroll report wouldn’t necessarily be a downside catalyst for Wall Street. The Federal Reserve has said it wouldn’t raise interest rates until it deems the economy strong enough to be able to withstand it, and a below-consensus jobs number could ease concerns that the central bank will raise rates sooner rather than later.
* While payrolls is the most closely watched report due out this week, data on Thursday could indicate whether the trend of recent below-consensus data is likely to continue. Initial jobless claims, which will be reported at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT), are seen rising by 3,000 in the latest week. After the market opens, reports on February durable goods and factory orders will be released.
* Energy shares could be pressured, with crude oil down 1.8 percent at $ 49.18 per barrel. The decline came as nuclear talks between officials from the big global powers and Iran continued. If the talks are successful, that could allow Iran to release more crude oil onto world markets at a time when concerns about oversupply have already contributed to the commodity being down more than 50 percent since June.
* Micron Technology Inc fell in light premarket trading a day after the chipmaker forecast lower revenue for the current quarter.
Futures snapshot at 6:52 a.m. (1052 GMT):
* S&P 500 e-minis were down 6.5 points, or 0.32 percent, with 89,955 contracts changing hands.
* Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 16.25 points, or 0.38 percent, in volume of 12,599 contracts.
* Dow e-minis were down 43 points, or 0.24 percent, with 16,198 contracts changing hands.
(Editing by Bernadette Baum)
- Stocks & Offerings