Stock Futures Retreat on ECB Rate Decision, Bearish Data

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Stock futures gave back most of their slim gains as Wall Street reacted negatively to the European Central Bank's decision to not lower EU-zone interest rates and weaker than expected data on initial jobless claims and the balance of trade. Although the ECB is generally expected to introduce some type of unconventional method to boost the economy and stabilize prices, the decision to leave interest rate unchanged triggered a knee-jerk reaction to take profits in equities off yesterday's higher levels.

The data this morning was also a catalyst for the more cautious tone as initial jobless claims rose a much greater than expected 16,000 to 326,000 versus estimates for a gain of only 9,000.

Also, the trade deficit swelled to $42.3 billion in February, beating estimate for a decline in the deficit to $38.8 billion. Declining trade with China and the EU contributed to a 1.1% decline in exports and 0.4% drop in imports.

Later this morning, the PMI services index is expected to notch higher to 53.9 in March from 53.3 the month prior. Also, the ISM non-manufacturing index is forecast to improve to 53.3 from 51.6.

-Dow Jones Industrial up 0.10%

-S&P 500 futures up 0.04%

-Nasdaq 100 futures down 0.03%

SENTIMENT

Nikkei up 0.84%

Hang Seng up 0.18%

Shanghai Composite down 0.74%

FTSE-100 up 0.03%

DAX-30 down 0.12%

PRE-MARKET SECTOR WATCH

(+) Large cap tech: higher

(+/-) Chip stocks: mixed

(+/-) Software stocks: mixed

(+/-) Hardware stocks: higher

(+) Internet stocks: higher

(+/-) Drug stocks: mixed

(-) Financial stocks: lower

(+) Retail stocks: higher

(+/-) Industrial stocks: mixed

(+) Airlines: lower

(-) Autos lower

UPSIDE MOVERS:

(+) WPCS (+6.62%) Agreed to sell all of the assets and liabilities of its Seattle operations for approximately $2.7 million.

(+) CYTR (+10.50%) Positive results in animal tests for brain tumor treatment

DOWNSIDE MOVERS:

(-) PEIX (-4.06%) Priced 1.75 million shares at $16.00 each for gross proceeds of $28 million.

(-) LQDT (-13.28%) Warning that the cost of the Dept of Defense contract to hit 2015 EBITDA

(-) BGMD (+16.67%) Announced plans to offer new shares in public offering

(+) SGOC (-33.42%) Q4 revenue fell 30% from Q4 2012



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2014 MTNewswires.com. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.


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