After another record high for the S&P 500 Wednesday, stocks could once again hit new milestones Thursday as investors focus on the European Central Bank and wait for U.S. jobs data due Friday.
As widely expected, the ECB said it will keep its key interest rate unchanged at 0.25%. But the central bank is facing growing pressure to do more to stimulate the eurozone economy as risks of deflation rise and the euro remains strong.
To that end, investors will be listening closely to what ECB President Mario Draghi says in a press conference for clues about whether the ECB will take further steps to prop up the economy.
European markets were mostly lower in afternoon trading following the announcement. But with futures still pointing to a higher open in the U.S., it's possible that the S&P 500 could hit another new all-time high and that the Dow, which fell just short of a closing peak Wednesday, could do so as well.
Investors are also getting ready for Friday's March jobs report. They'll get another readout on the labor market Thursday when the Labor Department reports the latest figures on jobless claims.
In corporate news, Google issued new shares late Wednesday as part of the tech giant's long-anticipated 2 for 1 stock split. The new class C shares will begin trading Thursday under the ticker, "GOOG," and will come with no voting rights. Old Google class A shares will trade under the new symbol "GOOGL," and will retain their voting rights.
Shares of both classes of Google should begin trading at around $570 -- roughly half the value of Wednesday's closing price.
Yelp (YELP)was down slightly ahead of the market open after the Wall Street Journal reported that the review site receives around six subpoenas each month, often relating to business owners suing the company. Shares of Yelp fell more than 5% on Wednesday.