By Barbara Kollmeyer, MarketWatch
U.S. stock futures pointed to slight losses Friday, clouding the Dow industrials' chance of a new closing high, as the surging dollar prompted worries about exporters.
The fresh strength in the dollar comes after Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen signaled Thursday that a December interest-rate hike (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/yellen-says-fed-may-hike-interest-rates-relatively-soon-2016-11-17) was likely to go ahead.
Dow Jones Industrial Average futures slipped 25 points, or 0.1%, to 18,844, while S&P 500 futures eased 4.3 points, or 0.2%, to 2,179.75. Nasdaq-100 futures slipped 4.5 points to 4,823.75.
Wall Street finished a wobbly session slightly higher after Yellen's remarks on Thursday. The Dow ended up 0.2% at 18,903.82, just 20 points short of the all-time closing high, set Tuesday.
On Friday, the ICE Dollar Index (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/dollar-busts-past-110-for-the-first-time-in-months-2016-11-18) , which measures the currency against a basket of six rivals, shot to a fresh 13-year high. The greenback was trading at levels not seen in months against the Japanese yen .
"In a high growth environment, it is likely we will see investors moving into the U.S. as a source of capital appreciation," said Joshua Mahony, market analyst at IG, in a note to clients.
"However, the hesitancy seen in U.S. stock markets is a clear nod to the fact that with such dollar appreciation comes an environment which is progressively more difficult for U.S. exporters," he added.
In a continuation of Thursday's action, the yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose 1 basis point to 2.31%.
Fed speakers ahead: Investors might look for guidance from more policy makers on Friday. St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said at a conference in Frankfurt that he's leaning towards the likelihood of an interest-rate hike in December, according to a report from CNBC (http://www.cnbc.com/2016/11/18/feds-bullard-says-hes-leaning-toward-supporting-a-december-rate-hike.html).
Dallas Fed President Rob Kaplan will speak at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Time in Houston, while Kansas City Fed President Esther George is set to talk at the Dallas Fed at 9:30 p.m. Eastern.
Also on the docket is Fed governor Jerome Powell, who is scheduled to appear at the San Francisco Fed at 9:45 p.m. Eastern.
The only major data release of note on Friday is a report on leading indicators, due at 10 a.m. Eastern.
Stocks to watch: Abercrombie & Fitch Co.(ANF) and Foot Locker Inc.(FL)are due to report earnings ahead of the market's open.
Salesforce.com Inc.(CRM) could add to Thursday's late-session gains, which came after the cloud-computing company posted rising revenue and boosted its outlook (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/salesforce-posts-rising-revenue-lifts-outlook-2016-11-17-1948519). But shares of Applied Materials Inc.(AMAT) fell in after-hours trading after the chip-equipment maker missed expectations for new orders (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/applied-materials-profit-up-21-new-orders-miss-2016-11-17).
Read:Salesforce sets finish line in race to $10 billion (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/salesforce-sets-finish-line-in-race-to-10-billion-2016-11-17)
Gap Inc.(GPS) shares may see pressure. The stock fell in late trade after the retailer posted a weak outlook. (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/gap-shares-fall-on-weak-outlook-2016-11-17)
Other markets: European stocks (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/banks-commodity-stocks-slide-put-pressure-on-european-markets-2016-11-18) pulled back on Friday, led by banking and commodity names. European Central Bank President Mario Draghi (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/ecbs-draghi-signals-stimulus-will-be-extended-2016-11-18) signaled Friday that the central bank's stimulus will be extended for the region, whose economy remains clouded by risks.
Asian markets (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/asian-markets-rise-nikkei-hits-10-month-high-in-intraday-trading-2016-11-17) had a mixed day, though yen weakness gave a boost to the Nikkei 225 index , which rose 0.6%.
The dollar's move higher took a toll on gold (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/gold-slides-toward-1200-as-us-rate-hike-looks-imminent-2016-11-18) , which dropped $11.80, or 1%, to $1,205.30 an ounce. Oil (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/oil-stumbles-on-dollar-strength-lack-of-faith-in-opec-output-deal-2016-11-18) slipped 11 centsto $45.28 a barrel.
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
November 18, 2016 06:38 ET (11:38 GMT)
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