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Wall Street on Track for Higher Open on Tech Strength

April 1 (Reuters) - Major U.S. stock indexes were set to open higher on Thursday, as technology shares, led by chipmakers, gained following an upbeat earnings outlook by Micron, while optimism about the U.S. economic growth lifted sentiment.

Increased vaccinations and massive fiscal stimulus are powering a recovery in the labor market, which helped investors shrug off latest data that showed a rise in the number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits last week.

The closely-watched monthly jobs report on Friday could show U.S. economy added 647,000 jobs last month after February’s 379,000 rise.

“The data continues to give confidence that the earnings are going to be revised higher,” said Larry Adam, chief investment officer at Raymond James.

“April is usually a pretty good month for the market historically and I would expect that momentum to continue especially as we see the economy strengthen.”

Micron Technology Inc advanced 5% premarket after the chipmaker forecast fiscal third-quarter revenue above Wall Street estimates due to higher demand for memory chips, thanks to 5G smartphones and artificial intelligence software.

U.S.-listed shares of rival Taiwan Semiconductor rose 2.4% on its plan to invest $100 billion over the next three years to meet the rising chip demand.

Nasdaq 100 futures jumped 1% as “high flying” stocks including Inc, Apple Inc, Alphabet Inc, Microsoft Corp and Facebook Inc added between 0.8% and 1.2% after underperforming last month on concerns over elevated valuations.

The S&P 500 hit a new intraday high, but stopped short of touching 4,000 points for the first time on Wednesday as President Joe Biden’s unveiled a $2 trillion-plus plan to rebuild the world’s largest economy.

Biden’s “American Jobs Plan” would put corporate America on the hook for the tab as the government creates millions of jobs building infrastructure, such as roads, tackles climate change and boosts human services like care for the elderly.

At 08:43 a.m. EDT, Dow E-minis were up 24 points, or 0.07%, S&P 500 E-minis were up 13.75 points, or 0.35% and Nasdaq 100 E-minis were up 139.5 points, or 1.07%.

U.S. stock markets will remain shut on account of Good Friday holiday.

Johnson & Johnson fell 0.9% after the drugmaker said it had found a problem with a batch of the drug substance for its COVID-19 vaccine being produced by Emergent Biosolutions .

Emergent’s shares tumbled 7%.

Uber Technologies Inc rose 1.4% after Jefferies began coverage on the ride-hailing company’s shares with “buy” and said the company could be profitable soon.

(Reporting by Devik Jain and Medha singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

Source: Reuters

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