MarketWatch.com - Pre-Market Indications

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Indications: U.S. futures extend mild rise after jobless claims

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By Kate Gibson and Barbara Kollmeyer, MarketWatch

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) â€" U.S. stock futures tallied mild gains Thursday after weekly jobless-claims data came in better than anticipated as the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 target April highs.

The government’s count of those filing new applications for unemployment benefits declined by 17,000 last week to 421,000, better than the 425,000 expected by analysts polled by MarketWatch. Read more about jobless claims.

“We’re going in the right direction. It’s very important to look at the trend and not at a single point of time, and the trend is improving,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Jefferies & Co., who pointed to the four-week average of new claims, which fell 4,000 to 427,500.

“Coming into today, the four-week average was 431,500, and last year the number was 497,000,” he said.

Up 32 points before the claims data, futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were lately up 48 points to 11,415, while those for the S&P 500 rose 6.3 points to 1,235.

Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index rose 10.75 points to 2,211.25.

U.S. stocks closed slightly higher Wednesday, in a late turnaround owing to a rally in financial stocks and hopes for the effect of tax cuts.

That helped ease worries about a selloff in government bonds.

Citigroup Inc. /quotes/comstock/13*!c/quotes/nls/c (C 4.65, +0.01, +0.22%)   and half a dozen other banks are being targeted by Irving Picard, the trustee in charge of recouping funds for Bernard Madoff’s victims. On Wednesday, Picard filed a suit seeking more than $1 billion.

Shares of Lululemon Athletica Inc. /quotes/comstock/15*!lulu/quotes/nls/lulu (LULU 66.15, +10.45, +18.76%)  added 10% in premarket trading. The athletic-apparel retailer reported fiscal third-quarter profit rose to 36 cents a share from 20 cents a share in the year-earlier period.

Stocks in Europe were mostly higher Thursday, helped by gains for ASML Holding /quotes/comstock/15*!asml/quotes/nls/asml (ASML 37.42, +2.25, +6.39%)   and other chip-related stocks, along with financial stocks. Auto stocks were weak, helping to drag the German DAX index into the red. See Europe Markets.

Asia had a mixed session, with a sharp selloff for the India Sensex. Investors worried that the U.S. dollar would strengthen and about damped fund inflows tied to forecasts for a stronger rupee. See Asia Markets.

Seoul stocks finished at a three-year high after the Bank of Korea left interest rates unchanged, while Sydney shares hit a four-week high on a strong jobs report.

Gold futures rose $5.60 to $1,388.8 an ounce, while crude-oil futures gained 58 cents to $88.86 a barrel as the dollar pulled back a bit against major rivals.

Kate Gibson is a reporter for MarketWatch, based in New York. Barbara Kollmeyer is an editor for MarketWatch in Madrid.

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Indications: U.S. futures point to mild gains with data on tap

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By Barbara Kollmeyer, MarketWatch

MADRID (MarketWatch) â€" U.S. stock futures were pointing to a mildly higher start for Wall Street on Thursday, with weekly jobless data expected to be a focus for investors hoping to build on the prior session’s gains.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 29 points, or 0.3%, to 11,397, while those for the S&P 500 rose 4.1 points, or 0.3%, to 1,232.80.

Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index rose 4.75 points, or 0.2%, to 2,205.25.

Manoj Ladwa, senior trader at ETX Capital, said futures are off sharply from earlier highs.

“Although stocks are going up, they seem to be rising on shrinking volume, which is rarely a good indicator. Therefore, the equity market could get quite choppy going into Christmas and the New Year,” he said in emailed comments.

Data will be a key focus for investors on Thursday, with weekly jobless claims at due 8:30 a.m. Eastern time and October wholesale inventories at 10 a.m. Eastern.

A survey of economists by MarketWatch was forecasting jobless claims to dip to 425,000 from a prior 436,000.

“They are expected to come in lower, which would be a positive, but given the shocker we had with the NFPR [nonfarm payrolls] and unemployment figures last week, traders seem wary of any negative surprises,” added Ladwa.

U.S. stocks closed slightly higher on Wednesday, in a late turnaround owing to a rally in financial stocks and hopes over the effect of tax cuts.

That helped ease worries about a selloff in government bonds.

On the company front, Brown-Forman Corp. /quotes/comstock/13*!bf.b/quotes/nls/bf.b (BF.B 68.83, +0.84, +1.24%)  is expected to release quarterly results ahead of the opening bell.

In preopening trade, shares of U.S.-listed ASML Holding NV /quotes/comstock/15*!asml/quotes/nls/asml (ASML 35.17, +0.42, +1.21%)  rose 5% after the Dutch chip-equipment group lifted its forecast for fourth-quarter bookings, saying it sees “stronger-than-expected demand” for lithography equipment and better demand as well for DRAM lithography.

Shares of Youku.com Inc. /quotes/comstock/13*!yoku (YOKU 33.44, +20.64, +161.25%)  rose 5.7% in pre-opening trade. The Chinese company that is likened to Amazon.com saw a strong debut in U.S. markets on Thursday. Its shares, priced at $12.80, more than doubled to close at $33.44. See appetite strong for Chinese IPOs

Stocks in Europe were mostly higher on Thursday, helped by gains for ASML and other chip-related stocks, along with financial stocks. Auto stocks were weak, helping to drag the German DAX index into the red. See Europe Markets.

Asia had a mixed session, with a sharp selloff for the India Sensex. Investors fretted about concern that the U.S. dollar would strengthen and about damped fund inflows tied to forecasts for a stronger rupee. See Asia Markets.

Seoul stocks finished at a three-year high after the Bank of Korea left interest rates unchanged, while Sydney shares hit a four-week high on a strong jobs report.

Gold futures fell 50 cents to $1,382 an ounce, while crude-oil futures rose 32 cents to $88.60 a barrel as the dollar pulled back some against major rivals.

Barbara Kollmeyer is an editor for MarketWatch in Madrid.

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NYSE Arca Morning Update - 08:30:00 ET

NYSE Arca Morning Update for Thursday, Dec 9, 2010 :

STOCKS TRADING ON NYSE Arca AT A PRICE 15% OR MORE AWAY FROM
THE PREVIOUS TRADE DAY'S CONSOLIDATED CLOSE PRICE (AS OF 08:30:00 ET)

Stock Wednesday's Close Current Price Pct Change Current NYSE ARCA Vol
CML $33.64 $28.42 (15.5%) 406,210


10 MOST ACTIVE STOCKS ON NYSE ARCA AS OF 08:30:00 ET

BASED ON DOLLARS TRADED: | BASED ON SHARES TRADED:
Stock $ Volume Price PctChg | Stock Share Vol Price PctChg
SPY $50,735,544 $123.82 0.5% | C 7,186,464 $4.69 1.0%
C $33,575,210 $4.69 1.0% | SIRI 869,672 $1.41 6.8%
TEVA $18,961,255 $52.03 5.6% | F 633,800 $16.89 1.5%
DG $15,059,636 $30.56 ( 1.0%) | BAC 566,839 $12.15 1.3%
FCX $13,798,738 $111.29 2.5% | DG 489,995 $30.56 ( 1.0%)
CML $11,819,093 $28.42 (15.5%) | AIB 436,933 $1.41 4.4%
F $10,706,846 $16.89 1.5% | SPY 409,956 $123.82 0.5%
AAPL $10,024,362 $322.13 0.4% | CML 406,210 $28.42 (15.5%)
RIO $9,993,217 $69.33 ( 0.3%) | IRE 372,002 $3.03 7.9%
BAC $6,887,290 $12.15 1.3% | TEVA 368,612 $52.03 5.6%


Price changes may be affected by symbol splits and dividends.

Consolidated close price is the last print (excluding prints with trade
conditions) prior to 4PM ET.

This information is also updated on our web page every morning at 8:35ET:
http://www.tradearca.com/data/volume/daily_update.asp

This material is for informational purposes only.
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This material is not to be construed as an offer to buy or sell any security in any jurisdiction where such an offer or solicitation would be illegal.
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Copyright [2010] by NYSE Euronext. All rights reserved. Reproduction and redistribution prohibited without prior express consent.

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