Stock futures were little changed in early morning trading on Thursday after major averages registered a third straight day of losses amid a drop in cryptocurrency prices.
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 4 points. S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq 100 futures both traded around the flatline.
The moves in futures followed a roller-coaster session on Wall Street triggered by a sudden drop in bitcoin price, which led to a sharp sell-off in many speculative areas of the market. Cryptocurrency-linked shares, including Tesla, Coinbase and MicroStrategy, led the market decline as bitcoin tanked as much as 30% Wednesday.
The S&P 500 slid 1.6% at its session low in the previous session but recouped most of the losses to close down just 0.3% as the market stabilized and bitcoin bounced off its low. The blue-chip Dow finished the session about 160 points lower after plunging 580 points at one point. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite ended the day flat, erasing a 1.7% drop.
“Crypto, after all, is the poster child for liquidity-induced speculation and the fact that this is now deflating … lends credence to the sense that risk markets are now starting to adjust to the looming prospect of peak-liquidity,” a JPMorgan strategist said in a note.
Bitcoin traded at $39,584.82 apiece, as of 12:26 am ET Thursday, according to Coin Metrics.
On Wednesday, investors also digested the Federal Reserve’s minutes from April that hinted at considering tapering its asset purchase programs in upcoming meetings.
“A number of participants suggested that if the economy continued to make rapid progress toward the Committee’s goals, it might be appropriate at some point in upcoming meetings to begin discussing a plan for adjusting the pace of asset purchases,” the Fed minutes said.
Investors await the latest number of U.S. weekly jobless claims to gauge the pace of labor-market recovery. New claims for unemployment benefits are expected to total 452,000 for the week ended May 15, slightly lower than 473,000 in the week prior, according to economists polled by Dow Jones.