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Wall Street points to a flat open, as investors lose hope of Dow hitting 20,000 this year

U.S. stock index futures pointed to a flat open on Thursday, as investors prepared to wade through more data, while trying to see if there's any chance of the Dow Jones' reaching 20,000 before the year is out.

Pedestrians carry umbrellas while walking past the New York Stock Exchange.
Victor J. Blue | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Pedestrians carry umbrellas while walking past the New York Stock Exchange.

On Wednesday, the Dow Jones industrial average fell as much as 113 points during its session, its second triple-digit loss since the U.S. election, and closed 0.56 percent lower, at 19,833.68.

As a result, the hope for the Dow topping 20,000 before 2016 ends is slowly falling away for investors.

On the data front, Thursday will see the release of the most recent jobless claims data, due out at 8.30 a.m. ET, on top of U.S. trade deficit data, expected at 8.30 a.m. ET also.

Meanwhile in oil, WTI and Brent crude futures hovered around the flat-line or posted slight losses early on Thursday, with WTI slightly down at $53.80, while Brent eked out slight gains, at $56.25.


As the light festive trading season continues to get underway, European stocks posted slight losses on Thursday morning, while Asia-Pacific indexes finished mixed overnight. All major U.S. indexes closed lower in the previous session.

No earnings are expected to be released on Thursday.

CNBC's Antonio José Vielma contributed to this report.

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