MarketWatch.com - Pre-Market Indications

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Indications: U.S. stock futures steady after strong 2010 start

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By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch

LONDON (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stock futures on Tuesday held onto the year's initial advance ahead of data on pending home and car sales.

S&P 500 futures rose 1.5 points to 1,130.30 and Nasdaq 100 futures added 1.25 points to 1,888.00. Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 16 points.

U.S. stocks rallied Monday to start the trading year, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising 156 points, the S&P 500 gaining 16 points and the Nasdaq Composite jumping 39 points.

Strong manufacturing surveys across the globe and comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and Vice Chairman Donald Kohn contributed to the advance.

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Tuesday sees the release of factory orders and pending home sales for November, as well as U.S. car sales data for December. Edmunds.com is targeting total sales for the year to come to just over 10 million cars and trucks, which would mark the industry's worst level in almost thirty years.

Google /quotes/comstock/15*!goog/quotes/nls/goog (GOOG 626.75, +6.77, +1.09%) will be in the spotlight as it's holding a media day for what many believe to be the introduction of its own phone that runs on the Android operating system it makes.

Kraft Foods /quotes/comstock/13*!kft/quotes/nls/kft (KFT 27.43, +0.25, +0.92%) said it's going to sell its frozen-food business to Nestle /quotes/comstock/11i!nsrgy (NSRG.Y 49.54, +1.19, +2.46%) and lift the cash component, but not overall offer, for Cadbury /quotes/comstock/13*!cby/quotes/nls/cby (CBY 51.65, +0.26, +0.51%) . Nestle also took itself out of the running over buying all or part of Cadbury.

Apple /quotes/comstock/15*!aapl/quotes/nls/aapl (AAPL 214.01, +3.28, +1.56%) is set to announce that it's buying mobile advertising firm Quattro Wireless for $275 million, according to a report on All Things Digital, and is due to sell a multimedia tablet in March, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

Mesa Air /quotes/comstock/15*!mesa/quotes/nls/mesa (MESA 0.12, 0.00, -1.08%) tumbled 55% after filing for bankruptcy protection.

Asia markets gained after the rally in the U.S. and Europe, with the Nikkei 225 rising 0.3% and the Hang Seng gaining 2.1%.

The FTSE 100 rose 0.4% in London.

Gold futures rose $9 an ounce, while the dollar index /quotes/comstock/11j!i:dxy0 (DXY 77.35, -0.18, -0.23%) slipped 0.2%.

Oil futures were little moved, while yields on 10-year Treasury bonds fell 2 basis points to 3.81%.

Steve Goldstein is MarketWatch's London bureau chief.


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