Stock futures are cautiously higher as expectations for global
stimulus and upbeat U.S. economic data lifts global equity prices
and restores investor confidence in equities.
The financial markets were flooded with global economic data,
most of which indicated that the European Central Bank will need to
introduce additional stimulus measures to address deflationary
pressure coupled with sluggish economic growth. In addition,
comments from Chinese Premier Li Kequiang also fueled expectations
for measures to boost the world's second largest economy.
The U.S. economic data has so far been a non-event with February
personal income and spending both coming in close to expectations.
Both income and spending were up 0.3% last month, with January
spending revised downward to +0.2% from +0.4% initially. The price
component maintained its +0.1% pace.
Later this morning, Reuters/Univ of Michigan will release its
revision to March consumer sentiment, last reported at 79.9 and
expected to improve slightly to 80.5.
In corporate news, shares of BlackBerry (
) are higher after the company reported a narrower than expected
loss, Microsoft (
) gets a boost from a $7 price target hike by RBC, and Wal-Mart (
) sues Visa (
) for $5 billion for excessive card-swipe fees.
-Dow Jones Industrial up 0.15%
-S&P 500 futures up 0.22%
-Nasdaq 100 futures up 0.35%
Nikkei up 0.50%
Hang Seng up 1.17%
Shanghai Composite down 0.24%
FTSE-100 up 0.06%
DAX-30 up 0.75%
PRE-MARKET SECTOR WATCH
(+/-) Large cap tech: higher
(+/-) Chip stocks: higher
(+/-) Software stocks:higher
(+/-) Hardware stocks: higher
(+/-) Internet stocks: higher
(+/-) Drug stocks: mixed
(+/-) Financial stocks: higher
(+/-) Retail stocks: mixed
(+/-) Industrial stocks: higher
(+/-) Airlines: higher
(+/-) Autos mixed
(+) IDRA (+19.85%) Plaque psoriasis trial meets primary and
(+) ARIA (+7.37%) Reports of a $20 per share buyout offer from
Jazz Pharmaceuticals (
(+) EXAS (+4.37%) FDA gave its approval for Cologuard's
(-) MBLX (-29.00%) Reported another Q4 loss as revenue fell.
(-) VJET (-9.8%) Reported a loss vs expectations for Q4
(-) ECYT (-4.8%) Prices 4.5 mln share offering at $21 apiece
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