U.S. equity futures are indicating a higher open on Wall Street ahead of the first trading session of October .
The major futures indexes are suggesting a gain of 0.8%.
On Wednesday, prospects for additional support from Congress for the economy helped drive the day’s trading on Wall Street.
Economic data being released on Thursday could determine the direction of the market.
The estimate for weekly jobless claims is that 850,000 people may have filed for first time unemployment benefits, down 20,000 from the prior week.
Reports on personal income and spending for August as well as the September ISM Manufacturing report are also on the docket.
A report from payroll processor ADP on Wednesday said hiring by private employers accelerated this month, with 749,000 jobs added versus economists’ expectations for 605,000.
That raises hopes for the federal government’s more comprehensive jobs report, which arrives on Friday. Economists expecting to see hiring slowed to 850,000 from 1.4 million in August.
This month’s jobs report will take on even more importance than usual as it is the last one to be released before Election Day in November.
Trading on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was suspended Thursday because of a problem in the system for relaying market information. Most other Asian markets were closed for national holidays.
The Tokyo Stock Exchange said that all trading was stopped because of the problem, and will not resume for the rest of the day. It was unclear when it would be resolved and the system would be operating again.
In Europe, London’s FTSE gained 0.8%, Germany’s DAX slipped 0.1% and France’s CAC added 0.7%.
The S&P 500 rose 0.8% to 3,363.00. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.2% to 27,781.70, and the Nasdaq composite 0.7%, to 11,167.51.
|I:DJI||DOW JONES AVERAGES||27781.7||+329.04||+1.20%|
|I:COMP||NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX||11167.506924||+82.26||+0.74%|
It was the last day of a strong quarter for the market, where the S&P 500 rallied 8.5% to follow up on its 20% surge in the spring.
Continued support from the Federal Reserve helped drive the gains, as the central bank leaned further into the whatever-it-takes approach taken to support markets and the economy. After already cutting interest rates to nearly zero, the Fed said during the quarter that it may keep interest rates low even after inflation runs above its target level.
Other recent worries include rising tensions between the United States and China, as well as the uncertainties swirling around the upcoming U.S. elections.
In energy trading, benchmark U.S. crude lost 20 cents to $40.02 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, the international standard, fell 15 cents to $42.15 a barrel.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.