- Pre-Market Indications

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Indications: U.S. futures in tight range ahead of data

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By Simon Kennedy, MarketWatch

LONDON (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stock-market futures traded within a tight range Wednesday ahead of data on import prices and industrial production, while the dollar rebounded against the yen after Japan intervened in currency markets.


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Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 10 points to 10,453, while those of the S&P 500 index dropped 1.3 points to 1,114.50. Futures on the Nasdaq 100 were up 1.25 points at 1,923.75.

U.S. stocks ended mostly lower Tuesday, halting a four-session winning streak, as investors eyed the latest U.S. retail-sales figures and some disappointing data from Germany. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down around 18 points. The Nasdaq, though, eked out a gain to extend its winning streak to a fifth day.

The dollar was up 2.6% against the Japanese currency at 85.237 yen Wednesday after Japanese authorities publicly intervened in currency markets for the first time since 2004.

The intervention was aimed at stemming the rise of the yen, which had earlier hit its highest level in more than 15 years and has been an increasing concern for exporters in the country.

The Finance Ministry and Bank of Japan were continuing to intervene in markets intermittently, according to reports Wednesday. See full story on Japan’s currency intervention.

The dollar was little changed against other currencies, with the euro falling 0.2% to $1.29697.

On the data front Wednesday, release of the New York Federal Reserve’s September Empire State Index is due at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time, as are data on import prices for August. Figures on August industrial production are due at 9:15 a.m. Eastern.

Among companies in focus, Boeing Co. /quotes/comstock/13*!ba/quotes/nls/ba (BA 62.76, -1.43, -2.23%)  said it expected the World Trade Organization to rule Wednesday in a case the European Union brought in 2006, alleging that the U.S. government was subsidizing the Chicago-based aerospace giant.

The Wall Street Journal earlier reported that the WTO was likely to rule that Boeing received improper subsidies. That could prompt talks between Boeing and the Airbus unit of France’s European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. to settle the subsidies matter, the report added.

Shares in AngloGold Ashanti /quotes/comstock/13*!au/quotes/nls/au (AU 46.72, +2.13, +4.78%)  fell more than 4% in premarket trading after the company late Tuesday announced plans for a simultaneous offering of stock and bonds.

Shares in Savient Pharmaceuticals /quotes/comstock/15*!svnt/quotes/nls/svnt (SVNT 14.76, -0.06, -0.40%) were another big mover, jumping 22% in premarket trades after the Food and Drug Administration approved the Savient drug Krystexxa for the treatment of gout in adults.

In international markets, Japan’s Nikkei 225 Average surged 2.3% after the intervention in currency markets, while most major European indexes were lower, with the French CAC 40 dropping 0.4%.

Simon Kennedy is the City correspondent for MarketWatch in London.

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