MarketWatch.com - Pre-Market Indications

Friday, June 11, 2010

Indications: U.S. stock futures edge up before economic reports

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By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch

LONDON (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stock futures edged higher Friday as traders waited for retail sales and consumer confidence reports before committing to extending -- or reversing -- the previous session's big rally.

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S&P 500 futures rose 3.2 points to 1,082.70 and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 4.75 points to 1,825.70. Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 22 points.

On a day when Goldman Sachs Group traded at a 52-week low, U.S. stocks rallied hard Thursday, with the S&P 500 climbing 2.95% in the third-biggest one-day gain of the year and the Dow Jones Industrial Average re-taking the 10,000 mark.

A bounce back for BP shares, a "sanguine" European Central Bank press conference, solid overseas economic data and a successful Spanish bond auction contributed to the gains, according to Jim Reid, a strategist at Deutsche Bank.

Friday's session will feature retail sales data, the first reading of June consumer confidence as well as inventories data that could show the sixth gain in seven months.

Economists at Barclays Capital expect the May sales to be driven by autos, offsetting declining gasoline prices.

In China, consumer-level inflation grew at a stronger-than-forecast 3.1% clip in May.

Of companies in the spotlight, Novartis /quotes/comstock/13*!nvs/quotes/nls/nvs (NVS 47.45, +1.52, +3.31%) may be active after an advisory committee recommended approval of a multiple sclerosis drug designed to compete with Biogen Idec's /quotes/comstock/15*!biib/quotes/nls/biib (BIIB 48.14, +1.06, +2.25%) Avonex.

The euro /quotes/comstock/21o!x:seurusd (CUR_EURUSD 1.2125, +0.0020, +0.1652%) was steady at $1.2123 after its big advance Thursday. European stocks were stronger in late morning trade, with the Stoxx Europe 600 rising 0.8%. The Nikkei 225 climbed 1.7% in Tokyo.

Oil futures slipped to around the $75 per barrel mark.

Steve Goldstein is MarketWatch's London bureau chief.


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