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Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly before the closing bell in New York August 27, 2015. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Wall Street set to open lower as September rate hike back in focus

Wall Street was set to open lower on Monday after weekend comments from Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer appeared to keep the door open for a rate hike in September.

U.S. inflation will likely rebound as pressure from the dollar fades, allowing the Fed to raise interest rates gradually, Fischer said at the global central banking conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Fischer’s comments suggest the Fed could look beyond a week of stock market turmoil brought on by fears that China’s economy is faltering.

“The market turmoil will continue in the near future. China is the catalyst, but the real reason for the selloff is the nervousness about the first U.S. rate hike,” KBC senior economist Koen De Leus said.

A decade of near-zero interest rates has helped the U.S. stock market stage a spectacular bull-run since the financial crisis.

Wall Street closed flat on Friday after a tumultuous week in which the Dow Jones industrial average slumped more than 1,000 points at one point last Monday. The three major indexes look set to post their biggest monthly loss since May 2012.

In China, stock markets had another volatile session on Monday. The Shanghai Composite <.SSEC> lost 0.8 percent, while the blue-chip CSI300 index <.CSI300> ended up 0.7 percent. Both were down more than 4 percent at one point.

In related news, Wall Street to gain at open on Greek deal hopes, oil lift.

The two indexes lost about 12 percent for the month, and nearly 40 percent since mid-June despite repeated and unprecedented measures by the government to shore up the market.

S&P 500 e-minis <ESc1> were down 20 points, or 1.01 percent, with 241,228 contracts traded at 8:39 a.m. ET.

Nasdaq 100 e-minis <NQc1> were down 38 points, or 0.88 percent, on volume of 42,595 contracts.

Dow e-minis <1YMc1> were down 173 points, or 1.04 percent, with 28,320 contracts changing hands.

Investors will be keeping a sharp eye on economic data again this week, especially the monthly jobs report on Friday, the last one before the Fed meets on Sept. 16-17.

The U.S. central bank has said it will raise rates only when it sees a sustained recovery in the economy. While the job market has improved steadily, inflation has remained below the central bank’s 2 percent target for more than three years.

J. C. Penney’s <JCP.N> shares were up 2.3 percent at $9.15 in premarket trading after Deutsche Bank raised its rating to “buy” from “hold”.

Twitter <TWTR.N> was up 3.2 percent at $27.69 after SunTrust Robinson raised its rating to “buy” from “neutral”.

Netflix <NFLX.O> fell 1.8 percent to $115.51 after the company said it chose not to renew its agreement with cable network Epix.

Phillips 66 <PSX.N> was up 2.3 percent at $79.01 after Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway <BRKa.N> <BRKb.N> disclosed a $4.48 billion stake in the oil refiner.

(Reporting by Tanya Agrawal; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

This article was written by Tanya Agrawal from Reuters and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

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