Wall Street seems to have recharged its batteries after the long weekend and may race on to a positive start on Tuesday, thanks to speculation concerning stimulus announcement by China and exit poll results in Greece that suggested that a pro-bailout party is leading in the run up to the June 17th elections. Spanish woes may also infuse some degree of uncertainty. Traders may also exercise restraint, given the fact that the week's economic calendar is heavy and is loaded with first-tier market moving data. The Conference Board's consumer confidence index due today may also give some direction to the markets.
As of 6:30 am ET, the Dow futures are rising 60 points and the S&P 500 futures are up 6.10 points, while the Nasdaq 100 futures are gaining 16 points.
U.S. stocks snapped their declining streak and advanced in the week ended May 24th, mainly as a result of some bargain hunting even as underlying concerns about Greece, Spain and Europe at large remained intact. Most of the days, the markets lingered below the unchanged line for much of the session before moving into positive territory in late trading.
The unfolding truncated week has many market moving reports in its economic calendar, with the monthly jobs report for May from both the Labor Department and the ADP and the results of the Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing survey being the key reports among them. Traders may also closely watch the Conference Board's consumer confidence index for May, the National Association of Realtors' pending home sales index for April, the weekly jobless claims report, the ISM-Chicago's manufacturing index for May, the personal income and spending report for April and auto sales for May.
The S&P Case-Shiller house price index for March, the second estimate of first quarter GDP, the Commerce Department's construction spending report for April and some Fed speeches round up the economic calendar of the week.
The Conference Board is scheduled to release its consumer confidence report for May at 10 am ET. The report is expected to show that the consumer confidence index edged up to 69.7 in May from 69.2 in April.
Additionally, the S&P/Case-Shiller home price index, which tracks monthly changes in the value of residential real estate in 20 metropolitan regions across the U.S., is scheduled to be released at 9 am. Economists expect a seasonally adjusted 0.3 percent month-over-month increase in the 20-city composite house price index for March.
Asian stocks closed higher after a mixed start, as speculation that China will unveil more stimulus measures to ensure soft landing perked up risk appetite.
After a negative start and lackluster trading in the morning, Japan's Nikkei 225 average moved back above the unchanged line in the afternoon. The index closed up 63.93 points or 0.74 percent at 8,657. Most sectors, barring defensive pharma, utility and consumer staple stocks, advanced.
Retail sales in Japan fell 0.3 percent month-over-month in April following the 1.2 percent drop in March. Additionally, a separate government report showed that Japan's jobless rate edged up 0.1 points to 4.5 percent in April, as the number of employed people declined by 160,000.
The All Ordinaries of Australia ended up 48 points or 1.16 percent at 4,168, with energy stocks leading the gains. Material stocks also found buying interest. On the economic front, a report released by the Housing Industry Association showed that total number of new home sales in Australia rose a seasonally adjusted 6.9 percent month-over-month in April, slower than the 9.4 percent increase in March.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index closed 254.47 points or 1.35 percent higher at 19,056. South Korea's Kospi added 1.41 percent and China's Shanghai Composite also ended notably higher.
The major European markets have surrendered much of their early gains and are currently trading mixed. Worries concerning the Spanish financial system have compounded despite assurances by Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy's that the nation's banks do not need an EU rescue. The nation's bond yields have risen sharply and its stock market is in doldrums
Meanwhile, Italy raised 8.5 billion euros through a 6-month treasury bill auction, in line with its target, although yield was higher than at an earlier auction and the bid to coverage ratio was also softer, indicating slacker demand.
by RTT Staff Writer
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