US Stocks to bear worst week in six years

New York (Reuters): US Stocks were set to open flat to lower on Friday, on course for their worst week in more than six years.

The broad-based equities retreat started last week as interest rates headed higher amid concerns of returning inflation.

Stocks plunged 4 percent on Thursday, overturning gains a day earlier and adding to the sense that rises in U.S. government bond yields have begun a major correction to nine years of almost uninterrupted gains for Wall Street.

Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI and the benchmark S&P 500 index .SPX are down more than 10 percent since hitting record highs on Jan. 26, and Thursday was the second time this week that the Dow fell more than 1,000 points.

If the Dow ends the day lower, it is likely to make the week its worst since the height of the financial crisis in October 2008.

“The fact that Monday’s lows were breached signals more trouble ahead and rallies are likely to give way to rising bond yields,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial in New York.

By 8:06 a.m. ET (1306 GMT), Dow e-minis 1YMc1 were down 114 points, S&P 500 e-minis ESc1 were down 6.25 points and Nasdaq 100 e-minis NQc1 were up 17.25 points.

World stocks were also on track for their worst week since 2011, knocked by a 4 percent decline in Chinese stocks. [MKTS/GLOB]

With Wall Street’s quarterly earnings season more than half-way through, 78.3 percent of the S&P 500 companies that have reported so afar have beaten profit expectations, above the 72 percent beat-rate in the past four quarters.

Chipmaker Nvidia (NVDA.O) was up about 9 percent in premarket trading after its upbeat results and forecast.

Expedia (EXPE.O) shares sank 16 percent after the online travel services company said costs would outpace revenue growth this year as it battles rivals for market share.

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