Stocks are inching lower this morning after private-sector job growth missed estimates.
S&P 500 futures are off 0.2 percent, matching the declines in London and Frankfurt. Asia was mostly lower overnight as Hong Kong and Shanghai fell 0.6 percent, but Tokyo continued its recent strength with a 0.2 percent gain. India's Sensex, which has been rallying on enthusiasm toward its new prime minister, retreated 0.2 percent.
Payroll firm ADP reported that private-sector employers added just 179,000 jobs last month, missing forecasts for a gain of 200,000. There are at least two more big headlines this week: the European Central Bank's announcement tomorrow morning and the government's non-farm payrolls report Friday.
The S&P 500 fell slightly yesterday but has been pushing to new highs above 1900 for the last week. Transportation stocks have led the advance, while the Russell 2000 small-cap index has resumed its pattern of weakness that began in March. The CBOE Volatility Index also inched higher yesterday after falling to its lowest level since March 2013.
There are several other items on today's calendar. The monthly trade deficit will be reported at 8:30 a.m. ET, and the Institute for Supply Management releases its service-sector index at 10 a.m. ET. Crude-oil inventories follow at 10:30 a.m. ET, and the Federal Reserve's Beige Book survey of economic conditions comes out at 2 p.m. ET. Weekly mortgage applications, reported earlier, fell 3.1 percent despite lower interest rates.
In company-specific news, Protective Life is surging 19 percent after accepting a $5.7 billion takeover by Japan's Dai-Ichi Life. Tibco Software is down 16 percent after warning that second-quarter revenue will miss estimates.
Commodities are mixed, with copper down 1.3 percent and oil up 0.5 percent. Grains and precious metals are also seeing small gains. The Japanese yen fell slightly, and most other currencies are little-changed.
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