US stocks are mostly set to rise this morning ahead of reports
on industrial production and consumer sentiment.
After yesterday's gains,
(INDEXDJX:.DJI) futures were down 0.01% at 15,184 this morning
before the opening bell. After the second-biggest gain this year,
(INDEXSP:.INX) futures are up 0.17% to 1,612.20 and contracts on
(INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) index sank 0.19% to 2,925.75.
Energy and food costs drove producer prices up more than expected
in May. The index gained 0.5% after April's 0.7% fall. Excluding
food and energy costs, producer prices rose 0.1%, right in line
with economists' estimates.
The US current account balance fell by $4.3 billion to $106.1
billion in the first quarter.
Separate reports later this morning might show a recovery in
industrial production. Economists expect production to rebound 0.2%
in May after declining 0.5% in April as manufacturing improves
0.3%. The Reuters/University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment survey
is likely to match the previous reading of 84.5.
Japanese equities bounced higher today after the strong US data
releases on Thursday and Prime Minister Abe vowed that his
ambitious growth strategies will widen in the fall. The Bank of
Japan's May minutes showed that the central bankers are in favor of
a two-year limit to unprecedented anti-deflation measures to quiet
bond market volatility.
European stocks are also up today despite disappointing data.
Employment shrank by 0.5% to a fresh post-2008 low in the first
quarter. Employment fell the fastest in Greece, Portugal, Spain,
and Cyprus, while the Baltic states saw the fastest growth. This is
the lowest level of employment since 2006.
Inflation across the eurozone was also subdued at a 0.1%
month-over-month rise. On a yearly basis, consumer prices rose
) shares rallied 7.29% after Deutsche Bank upgraded the stock to a
) is suing
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc
) to stop it from raising price-fixing claims over card swipe fees.
The retail giant is among thousands of merchants who settled claims
that the big payments processors illegally fix fees for credit card
swipes that could amount to as much as 2% of the sale. Visa's
lawyers claim that it wants to end the "endless, wasteful
litigation between the parties" and that Wal-Mart has made it clear
that it wants to file its own suit separate from the class-action
Smith & Wesson Holding Corp
), the gun manufacturer, rallied 5.5% after beating earnings
estimates for the fourth fiscal quarter.