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Stocks May Benefit From Recent Upward Momentum - U.S. Commentary


After ending the previous session mixed, stocks may move to the upside in early trading on Tuesday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 63 points.

Stocks may benefit from recent upward momentum, which has lifted the markets to record highs amid optimism about the economic outlook.

Continued strength seen in the overseas markets on the day may also contribute to early buying interest on Wall Street.

Overall trading activity may remain somewhat subdued, however, with a lack of major U.S. economic data keeping some traders on the sidelines.

Traders may be reluctant to make more significant moves ahead of the release of closely watched data on retail sales and producer and consumer prices later in the week.

Financial giants JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Wells Fargo (WFC) are also due to report their quarterly results on Friday as earnings season gets underway.

Among individual stocks, shares of Target (TGT) are moving notably higher in pre-market trading after the retailer raised its fourth quarter earnings guidance on strong holiday sales.

Data storage company Seagate Technology (STX) may also see early strength after providing upbeat fiscal second quarter gross margin, revenue and shipment guidance.

On the other hand, shares of Allergan (AGN) could move to the downside after the pharmaceutical company forecast fiscal 2018 revenues below analyst estimates.

Following the rally seen last week, stocks turned in a relatively lackluster performance during trading on Monday. The major averages spent much of the day lingering near the unchanged line before closing mixed.

The Dow edged down 12.87 points or 0.1 percent to 25,283.00, while the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 reached new record closing highs. The Nasdaq climbed 20.83 points or 0.3 percent to 7,157.39 and the S&P 500 rose 4.56 points or 0.2 percent to 2,747.71.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher during trading on Tuesday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index advanced by 0.6 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index climbed by 0.4 percent.

The major European markets have also moved to the upside on the day. While the French CAC 40 Index has risen by 0.7 percent, the German DAX Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index are both up by 0.4 percent.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are inching up $0.21 to $61.94 a barrel after rising $0.29 to $61.73 a barrel on Monday. Meanwhile, after dipping $1.90 to $1,320.40 an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are sliding $5.40 to $1,315 an ounce.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 112.66 yen compared to the 113.09 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Monday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued $1.1917 compared to yesterday's $1.1967.

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