US pre-open: Futures trade higher following four consecutive losing sessions
Wall Street futures were pointing towards a positive open ahead of the bell on Friday but major indices were still on track to end the week in the red.
As of 1230 BST, Dow Jones futures were up 0.48%, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 futures had the stocks opening 0.42% and 0.44% higher, respectively.
The Dow closed 151.69 points lower on Thursday, its fourth-straight day of losses.
Major indices will likely be in a holding pattern for the next little while as market participants wait to see exactly what the Federal Reserve's next move will be following its two-day policy meeting on 21 September, with Wall Street particularly looking out for an update on the central bank's bond-buying program after the European Central Bank left its monetary policy unchanged on Thursday, but stated that it would slow the pace of its asset-purchase programme.
Interactive Investor's Richard Hunter said: "Despite falling filings for jobless claims numbers in the US, the overhang of last week’s non-farm payrolls miss is still weighing on fragile sentiment, perpetuating concerns of stalling economic growth.
"Markets were unable to break a succession of losses over the last few trading sessions as risk sentiment ebbed throughout the day. Fears of the impact of the Delta variant were underlined by statements from several of the leading American airlines that sales had slowed in the face of the new outbreaks as they cut revenue forecasts.
"With the economic data currently providing mixed messages, investors are increasingly battening down the hatches, with the next leg of growth yet to emerge. At the same time, the impact on the ground will be seen over the next few weeks as the third quarter ends and corporates begin to report on how they have fared against this difficult backdrop, especially compared to the extraordinarily strong second quarter which most enjoyed."
On the macro front, August's PPI will be released at 1330 BST, while July's wholesale inventories figures will be published at 1500 BST.
In the corporate space, Kroger will report earnings throughout the course of the day.