U.S. stock futures were pointing to a mixed Friday open, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 looking at losses and the Nasdaq tracking higher. All three squeaked out gains in Thursday's volatile session.
However, this week's sharp declines added to the already rough month. With four trading days left in September, the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq were tracking for their first monthly losses since March, a month in which all three benchmarks hit their coronavirus lows.
In fact, the Nasdaq as of Thursday's close was firmly in a correction, as defined by a drop of more than 10% below recent highs. That high came on Sept. 2, before the tech-led sell-off. The S&P 500 and Dow were over 9% below their respective record highs on Sept. 2 and Feb. 12.
The end of September also brings an end to the third quarter, which actually stands to return healthy gains on Wall Street.
On Friday's economic calendar, the government reported a weaker-than-expected increase of 0.4% for August durable goods orders. Economists had expected a 1.5% advance. The strong July gain was revised slightly higher to 11.7%.
House Democrats are preparing a new, smaller coronavirus relief package expected to cost about $2.4 trillion, a person familiar with the plans said.
The bill would include a federal unemployment benefits boost, direct payments to Americans, small-business loan funding and aid to airlines, the person said Thursday.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has repeatedly pushed Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to boost the administration's roughly $1.3 trillion offer by $1 trillion.
President Donald Trump, campaigning in battleground states North Carolina and Florida on Thursday, said the nation's economic prosperity depends on the election. Trump did not mention at either event anything about his incendiary refusals this week to accept a peaceful transfer of power if he were to lose the election.
In Florida, Trump told a largely maskless crowd, "If you want to save America, you must get out and vote." The president has been saying without evidence that mail-in voting is prone to fraud. Earlier in the day in North Carolina, he said he signed an executive order to protect people with preexisting conditions from insurance discrimination, a right already afforded under Obamacare, which he wants to overturn.
Maryland-based Novavax started a late-stage trial of its experimental Covid-19 vaccine in the U.K., in partnership with the British government's Vaccines Taskforce. Shares of Novavax, already up nearly 2,500% in 2020, gained more than 6% in Friday's premarket trading.
Total U.S. coronavirus cases neared 7 million, according to data from Johns Hopkins University on Friday morning. Deaths in the U.S. from Covid-19 exceeded 200,000 earlier this week as global fatalities approached 1 million on almost 32.3 million infections.
A federal judge said the Trump administration must either delay a ban on U.S. app stores offering TikTok for download or file legal papers defending the decision by Friday.
The ban, set to take effect Sunday, is the latest twist in a saga that began when Trump signed an executive order last month that Beijing-based ByteDance sell or spin off TikTok's U.S. operations or face a ban because of national security concerns.
— Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report. Follow all the developments on Wall Street in real-time with CNBC's live markets blog. Get the latest on the pandemic with our coronavirus blog.