Like the rest of New York, stocks are just trying to get warm again this morning.
At 9:05 a.m. EST, the
futures were down 0.1 to 1392.4, near fair value and indicating a mixed open.
Tech was lately getting bids in premarket trading, most notably
, up 21 1/8 to 234 on news that it will join the S&P 500. But though yesterday's "healthy" pullback has created some room to rebound, it could be a bit dangerous to chase a tech bounce higher in the early going. It's not too difficult to imagine the
Nasdaq Composite Index
-- still up more than 50% on the year -- getting a lot healthier yet if momentum should swing to the downside.
"You can sit down now and come up with all sorts of conflicting charts," said Doug Myers, vice president of equity trading at
. "That usually portends a sideways move until the market gets its footing."
That's basically what the broader big-cap market has been doing lately. The S&P 500 has run into a lot of resistance since it finally punctured its July high two weeks ago, and has been ranging between the 1380 and 1420 levels.
Stocks may encounter some resistance from the bond market, where yields are back on the rise. The 30-year Treasury was lately down 25/32 to 97 1/32, putting its yield up at 6.347%. That could either slim or fatten when the
National Association of Purchasing Management
Purchasing Managers' Index
at 10 a.m.
Economists polled by
expect the headline PMI to register 56.3 for November, down slightly from the prior month's 56.6 reading. As always, the PMI's prices-paid component will be watched closely.
Oil was stabilizing after the past couple days' declines, the January crude contract lately sitting up a nickel to $24.64 a barrel.
Meanwhile, Seattle is in a state of civil emergency amid protests of the
World Trade Organization
surveyed the chaos in a
story this morning.
Tokyo's currency market was relatively quiet after two days of intervention by the
Bank of Japan
. The dollar traded in a narrow range between 102 yen and 102.4 yen overnight, though it found a brief burst of buying pressure from traders interpreting some vague comments from BOJ Governor
to mean that the bank would increase money supply to weaken the yen. There's no evidence that any such move is imminent, as the BOJ left its customary 1 trillion yen in the money market overnight.
The dollar was lately quoted at 102.28 yen.
The yen's strength continues to keep a lid on the Tokyo stock market. The
dropped 62.28, or 0.3%, to 18,495.95.
In Hong Kong, the
added 45.33 to close at 15,422.52. Propping up the index were constituents
Cheung Kong Holdings
, which found buyers on news that
Nippon Telegraph and Telephone
set plans to take a minority interest in
. The move will dilute
stake in the mobile-phone division to 25.1%.
Strong manufacturing data from France and Germany haven't provided any support for the euro, which has tumbled from a morning high of $1.0122 back below the $1.01 level. Sentiment just seems to have grown too negative for the currency to sustain any upside momentum.
The euro was lately trading at $1.0092.
The large European bourses were mixed in early afternoon trading. London's
was up 3.3 to 6600.5, while the Paris
was 1.39 lower to 5340.23. Frankfurt's
was up 31.49 to 5927.53.
-- Heather Bourbeau
Wednesday's Wake-Up Watchlist
Standard & Poor's
said after yesterday's close that it will add
index at the close of trading Tuesday, Dec. 7, reflecting the growing influence of Internet companies. Yahoo!, with a weighty market capitalization of $56 billion, will bump Canadian school bus company
from the index.
The staff of the
Federal Trade Commission
has concluded that the proposed $29 billion merger between
violates antitrust law and has recommended that the full commission block the deal,
The New York Times
reported, citing two people who have been briefed about the decision.
Meanwhile, yesterday the FTC gave the green light to
. BP Amoco said that terms in the FTC's decision to authorize Exxon's takeover of Mobil support its own plans to buy Arco.
Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures
said that it has inked a research license agreement with
involving antibody products.
Separately, Abgenix also agreed to a deal with
Human Genome Sciences
to develop antibody therapeutics.
, a privately held biopharmaceutical company, is acquiring
, with the total deal valued at about $140 million.
Scudder Kemper Investments
, a unit of
, a Swiss insurance company, is expected to announce that it is folding its brokerage business into that of
The Wall Street Journal
reported. DLJdirect is majority-owned by
Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette
, the investment bank.
, an Internet email marketing, publishing and list-management firm based in Boulder, Colo., for an undisclosed amount.
said their shareholders favored Hilton's $2.7 billion acquisition of Promus.
, a database software concern, is acquiring data-management software company
in a deal valued at $880 million.
said it would sell its
Department of Energy
environmental management contractor, to
. Terms were not disclosed, though Lockheed said the sale is the first in a series of possible divestitures aimed at sharpening Lockheed's focus on its core business.
said its board favored selling the company to
Offerings and stock actions
said it set a 3-for-2 stock split.
Earnings/revenue reports and previews
(Earnings estimates are from
First Call/Thomson Financial
posted fourth-quarter earnings of 40 cents a share, beating the 20-analyst estimate of 35 cents a share and the year-ago 16 cents.
Bausch & Lomb
said it plans to cut 850 jobs globally in an attempt to consolidate its contact-lens manufacturing division. Bausch & Lomb said the restructuring would result in a fourth-quarter pretax charge of $56 million, or 61 cents a share. Separately, the company said it plans buy back 5 million shares of stock.
said it sees its fourth-quarter earnings beating the 12-analyst estimate of 48 cents a share as a result of an increase in October and November orders.
reported November same-store sales rose 9%.
posted third-quarter earnings of 60 cents a share, beating the 14-analyst estimate of 59 cents and but down from the year-ago 63 cents a share.
raised its long-term rating on
to buy from accumulate.
Credit Suisse First Boston
raised its price target on
to 160 and rated the stock a buy.
Merrill upgraded its intermediate-term rating on shares of
to buy from accumulate.
said it will realign and refocus its organization on customer solutions. The company said it will combine its transport and logistics units and create a finance subsidiary. Ryder also said it would cut 200 of 30,000 jobs over six months due to the reorganization.