Futures Edge Lower Despite Asian Gains, Oil Retreats From
U.S. equity futures edged slightly lower in early pre-market
trade following gains from Asia as energy futures retreated from
range highs touched Tuesday. Also, weak economic data from Europe
as well as post-Cyprus fears weighed on sentiment.
In other news around the markets:
British fourth quarter GDP fell 0.3 percent, in line with
estimates, marking an official triple-dip recession for the U.K.
France's fourth quarter GDP also fell 0.3 percent, which was also
in line with estimates. Nikkei reported Tuesday that the Bank of
Japan will step up its easing efforts in April by increasing the
size of its asset purchase program. Also, overnight, Bank of Japan
Governor Kuroda spoke saying that the BoJ wants to abolish the
bank-note rule, which would allow the BoJ to own more bonds than
the amount of bank notes in circulation (the Federal Reserve, for
example, has no such rule). Cypriot finance minister Michael Sarris
said that uninsured depositors in Popular Bank of Cyprus (also
known as Laiki Bank) will not be paid out for 6 or 7 years and will
likely lose around 80 percent of uninsured assets. S&P 500
futures were slightly lower at 1,556.00. The EUR/USD was lower at
1.2805. Spanish 10-year government bond yields rose 0.05 percent to
4.99 percent. Italian 10-year government bond yields 10 basis
points to 4.68 percent. Gold fell 0.11 percent to $1,595.60.
Asian shares were higher overnight following gains in the U.S.
The Japanese Nikkei Index rose 0.18 percent and the Shanghai
Composite Index gained 0.16 percent while the Hang Seng Index rose
0.69 percent. Also, the Korean Kospi gained 0.49 percent and
Australian shares added 0.9 percent.
European shares were mostly lower in early trade on some weak
economic data. The Spanish Ibex Index fell 1.28 percent, confirming
a recent technical breakdown in Spanish stocks, and the Italian
FTSE MIB Index declined 0.66 percent. Meanwhile, the German DAX
declined 0.24 percent and the French CAC slid 0.57 percent while
U.K. shares gained slightly by 0.06 percent.
Commodities were slightly weaker overnight as weak European
economic data sent futures lower from recent highs, especially in
oil. WTI Crude futures declined 0.36 percent to $95.99 per barrel
and Brent Crude futures fell 0.09 percent to $109.26 per barrel.
Copper futures rose 0.07 percent to $344.50 per pound despite
global inventories hitting a three-year high and hedge funds
becoming the most bearish ever on copper. Gold was lower and silver
futures fell 1.32 percent to $28.30 per ounce.
Currency markets saw significant euro weakness overnight
following growth fears as well as continued fears following the
Cyprus bailout. The EUR/USD was lower at 1.2805 and the dollar rose
against the yen to 94.52. Overall, the Dollar Index rose 0.22
percent on strength against the euro, the pound, the Swiss franc,
the yen, and the Canadian dollar.
Stocks moving in the pre-market included:
) shares fell 2.96 percent pre-market after winning a patent
lawsuit. SAIC (NYSE:
) shares rose 4.21 percent following stronger than expected
earnings and a newly declared $1 per share dividend. J.C. Penney
) shares fell 0.2 percent pre-market as the company announced that
a third key marketing executive has left the company. Deutsche Bank
) shares declined 0.82 percent pre-market as S&P placed the
bank on ratings watch negative.
Notable companies expected to report earnings Wednesday
) is expected to report third quarter EPS of $0.39 vs. $0.37 a year
ago. Progress Software (NASDAQ:
) is expected to report first quarter EPS of $0.24 vs. $0.28 a year
ago. PVH Corp. (NYSE:
) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $1.50 vs. $1.18 a
year ago. Red Hat (NYSE:
) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $0.30 vs. $0.29 a
year ago. Texas Industries (NYSE:
) is expected to report a third quarter loss of $0.41 per share vs.
a loss of $0.87 per share a year ago. Verint Systems (NASDAQ:
) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $0.75 vs. $0.75 a
On the economics calendar Wednesday, MBA Mortgage Applications
and Canadian CPI are due out as well as Pending Home Sales. Also,
Chicago Fed President Charles Evans is set to speak and the
Treasury is set to auction 5-year notes. Overnight, German retail
sales and employment data as well as Eurozone retail data should
Good luck and good trading.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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