By RTT News, September 26, 2013, 06:30:00 AM EDT
(RTTNews.com) - After seeing lackluster sentiment in the previous five sessions, Wall Street stocks may attempt to make a comeback. The major U.S. index futures are pointing to a slightly higher opening on Thursday. Asian stocks traded amid caution, although the Japanese market advanced notably amid the yen's weakness, while European stocks are currently seeing weakness. With the domestic fiscal concerns hanging like the sword of Damocles, it is less likely that the markets make a meaningful recovery. Nevertheless, the jobless claims and a housing report due to be released during the day may give some direction to the markets.
At 6:15 am ET, the Dow futures are rising 24 points, the S&P 500 futures are moving up 3 points and the Nasdaq 100 futures are advancing 12 points.
U.S. stocks closed lower yet again on Wednesday, with the uncertainty surrounding the resolving of the U.S. fiscal woes kept sentiment subdued.
On the economic front, the Labor Department is due to release its jobless claims report for the week ended September 21st at 8:30 am ET. Economists estimate jobless claims to have risen to 330,000. Also at 8:30, the Commerce Department is scheduled to release its final second quarter GDP estimate. Economists expect the sequential GDP growth to be downwardly revised to 2.5 percent from the 2.7 percent estimated initially.
The National Association of Realtors will release its pending home sales report for August at 10 am ET. The consensus estimates call for a 1 percent month-over-month drop in the pending home sales index for the month.
Federal Reserve GovernorÂ Jeremy SteinÂ is scheduled to speak on yield-oriented investors at symposium in Frankfurt, Germany at 10:10 am ET. The Kansas City Federal Reserve is scheduled to release the results of its manufacturing survey at 11 am ET. Economists expect the manufacturing index based on the survey to increase to 9 in September from 8 in August.
In corporate news, Jabil Circuit ( JBL ) reported fourth quarter results that exceeded estimates, while its first quarter guidance was weak. Bed Bath & Beyond ( BBBY ) reported second quarter results exceeded estimates. For 2013, the company expects earnings of $4.88-$5.01 per share. Analysts' estimate is at the upper end of the company's guidance range.
Progress Software's ( PRGS ) third quarter results exceeded estimates. For the fourth quarter, the company expects revenues growth of 4-6 percent. Worthington's (WOR) first quarter results were roughly in line with estimates.
H.B. Fuller ( FUL ) reported better than expected third quarter results and issued positive fourth quarter guidance. Campbell (CPB) announced that its board approved a 7.6 percent increase in its dividend to 312 cents per share. Western Digital ( WDC ) announced the resignation of its CFO Wolfgang Nicki, effective November 17th, 2013. Nicki would take up the role of CFO at ASML Holdings in the Netherlands.
Accenture ( ACN ), Comtech Telecom ( CMTL ), Nike ( NKE ) and Thor Industries ( THO ) are the companies due to release their quarterly results after the close of trading.
The major Asian markets closed mixed, with the Chinese, Hong Kong, Malaysian and Taiwanese markets closing lower, while the rest of the major markets in the region advanced. The indecisive mood continued as the U.S. budgetary crisis remains still unresolved.
Japan's Nikkei 225 average benefited from the yen's weakness, as the domestic currency weakened on speculation that the government will introduce more corporate tax reforms. The index closed up 178.59 points or 1.22 percent at 14,799. Australia's All Ordinaries ended up 18.10 points or 0.34 percent at 5,288. Most sectors saw modest buying interest, while real estate and healthcare stocks came under selling pressure.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index closed at 23,125, down 84.60 points or 0.36 percent and China's Shanghai Composite Index slumped 42.71 points or 1.94 percent before closing at 2,156.
European stocks opened higher but have since then given back their gains and are currently trading lower amid concerns about the U.S. fiscal crisis and mixed domestic corporate news.
In corporate news, TUI Travels raised its underlying operating profit forecast for the year ending September 30th to grow at least 11 percent on a constant currency basis. Caterer Compass said it expects revenue growth of 4.5 percent for the full year and operating margin to be over 7 percent for the first time. At its Capital Markets Day, life and material science company Royal DSM said it is firmly on track to achieve the strategic objectives set out in 2010 and it would continue to focus on increasing profitability. Swedish retailer, H&M reported second quarter net income that increased to 4.43 billion Kronor, ahead of estimates by most analysts.
On the economic front, a report released by statistical office INSEE showed that French consumer confidence rose a point to 85 in September, with the reading coming in line with expectations. Separately, Eurostat reported that the broad monetary aggregate M3 in the euro area rose 2.3 percent year-over-year in August following a 2.2 percent increase in July. The growth was in line with expectations.
The U.K. economy expanded 0.7 percent sequentially in the second quarter as estimated in August, final data from the Office for National Statistics showed. The first quarter growth was revised up marginally to 0.4 percent from 0.3 percent.
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