After extending the post-jobs report rally yesterday, U.S. stocks look jaded, as they search for direction. The major U.S. index futures have held on to their slim gains and are currently modestly higher. Meanwhile, optimism across the Atlantic seems to be slipping away and the major European averages are currently trading mixed. The domestic markets may focus on a speech by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, who would speak for a second day in running, a few earnings releases and prices of resources. Risk currencies are all advancing, base metal prices are firmer and crude oil is trading flat.
As of 6:15 am ET, the Dow futures are adding 20 points, the S&P 500 futures are gaining 2.80 points and the Nasdaq 100 futures are moving up 13 points.
U.S. stocks advanced on Monday, helped by some positive corporate news and expectations that the eurozone crisis will not be allowed to escalate.
Bernanke is scheduled to host a town hall meeting with educations from across the country at Board headquarters at 2:30 pm ET.
The U.S. Federal Reserve is scheduled to release its monthly consumer credit report at 3 pm ET. Consumer credit for June is expected to show an increase of $10.3 billion after rising by a better than expected $17.1 billion in May.
In corporate news, Vornado Realty's (VNO) second quarter results exceeded estimates. Boston Properties (BXP) also reported better than expected second quarter results, while it issued healthy guidance for the full year.
Manitowoc's (MTW) second quarter adjusted earnings from continuing operations rose to 32 cents per share from 15 cents per share last year. Sales rose 5.9 percent to $1 billion. The earnings exceeded estimates, while the revenues were slightly shy of estimates. For 2012, the company expects crane revenue growth of 10-15 percent.
Pfizer (PFE) announced that the co-primary clinical endpoints of a Phase III trial of its Alzheimer's treatment bapineuzumab were not met. The company also said it has decided to discontinue all other bapineuzumab IV studies.
JDA Software (JDAS) reported second quarter results that trailed estimates, while its guidance was also bleak. TW Telecom (TWTC) reported below consensus results for its second quarter.
Scientific Games (SGMS) reported a loss of 14 cents per share on revenues of $229.30 million. The results trailed expectations. THQ, Inc. (THQI) reported second quarter a loss of $3.41 per share on a non-GAAP basis compared to a loss of $9.42 per share last year. The company's non-GAAP net sales fell to $38.5 million from the year-ago quarter's $141.2 million. However, the company's results were better than expected.
Buckeye Technology (BKI), Charles River (CRL), Cree (CREE), Express Scripts (ESRX), Live Nation (LYV), MEMC Electronics (WFR), Priceline.com (PCLN), Protective Life (PL), Sonus Networks (SONS), Sotheby's (BID) and Disney (DIS) are among the companies due to release their results after the markets close.
Most Asian stocks advanced, as suddenly traders began sensing some relief for the debt strapped eurozone nations. The retreating Spanish and Italian bond yields renewed hopes concerning diffusion of the eurozone debt crisis.
Japan's Nikkei 225 average ended up 77.02 points or 0.88 percent at 8,803.
Electric utilities Kansai Electric and Chubu Electric rallied 10.43 percent and 9.15 percent, respectively. Mitsui Chemicals, Maruha Nichiro, Pioneer, Sumitomo Metal, Nippon Steel and Denki Kagaku also advanced strongly. On the other hand, resource and real estate stocks came under some selling pressure.
Australia's All Ordinaries closed 18.50 points or 0.43 percent higher at 4,311 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index closed at 20,073, up 73.83 points or 0.37 percent.
The Reserve Bank of Australia left its key official cash rate unchanged at 3.5 percent for the second straight session. The move was in line with expectations. Meanwhile, the monetary policy board termed the global economic outlook as more subdued than a few month ago.
The major European markets are trading on a lackluster note after advancing in the past two sessions. The recent gains have taken the averages to their highest closing level in about 4 months. The overbought levels have introduced caution among traders.
On the economic front, German factory orders fell a worse than expected 1.7 percent in June compared to the previous month. Meanwhile, a report released by the U.K. Office for National Statistics showed that the U.K.'s industrial production fell 2.5 percent month-over-month, but not so worse as the 3.5 percent drop expected by economists. Manufacturing output declined 2.9 percent.
by RTT Staff Writer
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