Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up by 52 points at 10,099 and were 57 points above fair value. Futures for the S&P 500 were ahead by 7 points at 1061 and were 8 points above fair value, and Nasdaq futures were higher by 11 points and were 12 points above fair value.
Stocks ventured tentatively into positive territory late in Wednesday's session despite another round of weak data as the Department of Commerce reported a 12.4% drop in July new-home sales, a day after a report showed that July existing-home sales fell to the lowest levels in more than a decade.3Par (PAR) reached a revised merger agreement with Dell (DELL) after Dell topped Hewlett-Packard's (HPQ) per-share bid by 30 cents with an offer of $24.30 a share. The Labor Department said the number of people filing for jobless benefits declined by 31,000, to 473,000 in the week ended Aug. 21 after the previous week's upwardly revised level of 504,000. The drop is better than the 485,000 claims that economists had been looking for, according to Briefing.com.
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