Stock futures hold modest gains after claims, productivity data

Stock futures hold modest gains after the release of better than expected jobless claims and Q4 productivity rose a bit less than expected; S&P and Dow +0.2%, Nasdaq +0.1%.

European bourses are higher after The Bank of England and the European Central Bank, as expected, kept interest rates at record lows and indicated they would stay that way; Asian markets close higher, with the Nikkei closing at a five-week high on the back of a weakening yen.

Staples -12% and Costco -3% on disappointing earnings.

The government's jobs report for February will be published tomorrow, but the weather-related excuses already are starting.

Treasurys hold modest losses, with the 10-year yield nearly 3 bps higher at 2.73%.

Still ahead: factory orders, EIA natural gas.

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