MarketWatch.com - Pre-Market Indications

Monday, November 15, 2010

Indications: U.S. futures retain modest rise after retail sales

Stock Assault 2.0 - Artificial Intelligence Stock Market Software

By Polya Lesova and Kate Gibson, MarketWatch

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) â€" U.S. stock futures retained mild Monday gains after mixed economic reports showed retail sales rising 1.2% in October but a measure of business conditions in the New York region falling back into negative territory during November.

The data came with a round of deal-making as heavy-equipment manufacturer Caterpillar Inc. /quotes/comstock/13*!cat/quotes/nls/cat (CAT 81.04, -1.40, -1.70%)   said it would pay $7.6 billion for Bucyus International Inc. /quotes/comstock/15*!bucy/quotes/nls/bucy (BUCY 69.62, -2.32, -3.22%)   and as data-storage company EMC Corp. /quotes/comstock/13*!emc/quotes/nls/emc (EMC 21.72, -0.17, -0.78%)   said it would buy Isilon Systems Inc. /quotes/comstock/15*!isln/quotes/nls/isln (ISLN 26.29, +0.30, +1.15%)  for $2.25 billion.

Scaling back about 20 points, futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average /quotes/comstock/21b!f:dj\z10 (DJZ10 11,198, +46.00, +0.41%)  were up 23 points at 11,175, while S&P 500 futures /quotes/comstock/21m!f:sp\z10 (SPZ10 1,199, +3.50, +0.29%)  gained 4.5 points to 1,199.9.

Nasdaq 100 futures /quotes/comstock/21m!f:nd\z10 (NDZ10 2,149, +15.25, +0.71%)  added 12 points to 2,145.75.

The Dow industrials /quotes/comstock/10w!i:dji/delayed (DJIA 11,193, -90.52, -0.80%)  dropped 251.50 points last week, or 2.20% â€" the blue-chip benchmark’s biggest weekly point and percentage drop in three months.

APEC leaders eye free-trade zone

Asia-Pacific leaders in Yokohama, Japan, on Sunday agreed on plans for balanced regional growth as well as taking steps towards a huge regional free-trade zone.

Lowe’s Cos. /quotes/comstock/13*!low/quotes/nls/low (LOW 21.69, -0.61, -2.74%) shares traded flat in the premarket after the nation’s No. 2 home-improvement retail chain reported sales climbed 1.9% in the third quarter, below analysts’ expectations.

“Although retail sales have shown signs of a pulse in recent months, measures used to track home remodeling activity have continued to be soft,” Brian Sozzi, equity research analyst at Wall Street Strategies, wrote in a note on Lowe’s latest quarter.

U.S.-listed shares of Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan /quotes/comstock/13*!pot/quotes/nls/pot (POT 139.91, -2.09, -1.47%)   /quotes/comstock/11t!e:pot (CA:POT 141.37, 0.00, 0.00%)  dropped 1.4% in thin premarket trading after miner BHP Billiton Ltd. /quotes/comstock/13*!bhp/quotes/nls/bhp (BHP 86.97, -2.63, -2.94%)  said it will withdraw its $39 billion hostile offer. See more on the withdrawal of BHP’s hostil acquisiton bid for Canada’s Potash Corp.

European stock markets traded higher, with the Stoxx Europe 600 index /quotes/comstock/22c!sxxp (ST:STOXX600 271.68, +1.50, +0.56%)  gaining 0.5%.

Ireland and Greece were once again in the spotlight.

Over the weekend, media reports said that European Union officials are pressuring Ireland to take a bailout in order to calm jittery bond markets, while Irish officials responded by denying claims that Dublin needs a bailout. Read more on Ireland’s woes

As for Greece, its 2009 deficit was revised up to 15.4% of gross domestic product from a previous estimate of 13.6%. See story on Greece’s deficit

In the currency markets, the euro fell to $1.3629. The dollar index /quotes/comstock/11j!i:dxy0 (DXY 78.39, +0.31, +0.40%) , which tracks the performance of the greenback against a basket of other major currencies, rose to 78.418.

In commodities, gold futures fell to $1,362 an ounce while crude-oil futures topped $85 a barrel.

Polya Lesova is chief of MarketWatch’s London bureau. Kate Gibson is a reporter for MarketWatch, based in New York.

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