Futures and crude oil are rallying

Happy Friday!

US stock futures are up nicely ahead of the opening bell, following the steepest sell-off in two months on Thursday.

Near 8:56 a.m. ET, Dow futures were up 120 points, S&P 500 futures were up 15 points, and Nasdaq futures were up 35 points — all by less than 1%.

The S&P 500 closed down 24 points (1.2%) on Thursday, as the Japanese Yen and Treasuries benefited from safe-haven buying.

Crude oil was up sharply ahead of the market open. West Texas Intermediate crude futures for May delivery in New York rose 5% to as high as $39.67 per barrel.

Earlier this week, government data showed a surprise drop in the level of US oil inventories last week, and that helped lift prices a bit.

Later on Friday, driller Baker Hughes will release its latest count of US oil and gas rigs. And, we’re about one week away from the expected meeting between OPEC and non-OPEC producers during which they could agree on production freezes.

The US economic-data calendar is light.

Canada released a blockbuster March employment report with 40,600 jobs added and the unemployment rate down to 7.1% from 7.3%, both beating estimates.

The Canadian dollar rallied against its US counterpart by the most in three weeks, by about 1.1% to 1.3010.

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