US Markets

US STOCKS-Futures rise as better earnings ease nerves

Credit: REUTERS/BRENDAN MCDERMID

U.S. stock index futures edged higher on Thursday, as solid results from Microsoft, Lam Research and Tesla lifted sentiment following lackluster reports from big bellwether companies in the previous session.

By Shreyashi Sanyal

Oct 24 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures edged higher on Thursday, as solid results from Microsoft, Lam Research and Tesla lifted sentiment following lackluster reports from big bellwether companies in the previous session.

Third-quarter earnings reports are center stage with investors trying to gauge the fallout from a prolonged U.S.-China trade war, which has already shown up in the domestic economy.

But the narrative so far has been fairly upbeat, with only a small crop of companies including industrial giant Caterpillar, toy-maker Hasbro Inc, and chipmaker Texas Instruments TXN.O blaming the tariff moves for denting results.

Tech giant Microsoft Corp MSFT.O gained 1% premarket as its forecast for cloud computing services surpassed analysts' expectations. Tesla Inc TSLA.O surged 18.2% after a surprise quarterly profit.

Lam Research Corp LRCX.O jumped 7% after the chip gear maker forecast strong results for the December quarter.

Chip-related stocks including Microchip Technology MCHP.O, Micron MU.O and Nvidia NVDA.O also looked set to recover from a selloff in the previous session, sparked by a revenue warning from industry proxy Texas Instruments.

Of the 124 S&P 500 companies that reported results up to Wednesday, more than 82% topped earnings estimates, according to Refinitiv data. But analysts are still forecasting the first earnings contraction since 2016.

Comcast Corp CMCSA.O added 3.4%, while Dow Inc DOW.N gained 3% after both companies exceeded profit estimates.

Among the few weak results for the day, Post-it notes maker 3M Co MMM.N fell 2.7% after cutting its full-year profit forecast and missing third-quarter revenue estimates.

Twitter Inc TWTR.N slid nearly 20% after the social media platform posted worse-than-expected third quarter results.

At 7:27 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis 1YMcv1 were up 31 points, or 0.12%. S&P 500 e-minis EScv1 rose 5.25 points, or 0.17% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis NQcv1 were up 43.5 points, or 0.55%.

In a relatively quiet week regarding new twists in the U.S.-China trade rhetoric, focus has shifted to fresh domestic economic data.

PMI surveys for the manufacturing and services sectors, due 9:45 a.m. ET, will offer further clarity on the health of the U.S. economy after a mixed bag of business sentiment indicators from major economies including Japan and the euro zone.

(Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr)

((Shreyashi.Sanyal@thomsonreuters.com; +1 646 223 8780))

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

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