Stocks are inching lower this morning, one session after pushing
to new highs.
S&P 500 futures and European indexes are down almost 0.2
percent. Asia was mostly higher overnight, led by gains of more
than 1 percent in Hong Kong and Seoul. Bonds prices are up again as
The S&P 500 was little-changed yesterday, but at one point
pushed above 1900 for the first time. The Dow Jones Industrials and
Transportation Indexes also closed at new record levels. The moves
suggest that equities are poised to rally again after grinding
sideways for more than two months.
While the Nasdaq-100 has lagged, two quarterly reports in coming
sessions have the potential to revive the technology-heavy index:
Cisco Systems this afternoon and Applied Materials after the
closing bell Thursday. Today's agenda also brings results from
Deere and Macy's, plus producer prices at 8:30 a.m. ET, crude-oil
inventories at 10:30 a.m. ET, and Japanese economic-growth numbers
In earlier news, European industrial production for March missed
expectations and weekly mortgage applications rose 3.6 percent as
low interest rates spurred refinancing activity. Sony declined 4
percent after forecasting yet another yearly loss because of weak
demand for TVs and PCs. DE fell 1 percent after revenue missed
expectations and management trimmed guidance. Sears Holdings rose
more than 4 percent after announcing plans to divest its stake in
In addition to AMAT's earnings, tomorrow's agenda is the busiest of
the week, with results due from Wal-Mart Stores and Kohl's, plus
European growth, initial jobless claims, consumer prices, and
regional surveys from the New York and Philadelphia Federal Reserve
market scanner has shown the strength spread across several groups
in the last month. Noteworthy gainers include office-supply
retailers, automobile retailers, shipping and logistics companies,
health insurers, energy frackers, and providers of mobile
semiconductors. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have also started to
rally, which could bode well for other financials.
Oil is up 0.3 percent, while gold, silver, and copper are all up
about 1 percent. The euro and Australian dollar also advanced. The
Japanese yen is up across the board.
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