The market doesn't look willing to consolidate yet after
yesterday's eye-popping post-
At 9:05 a.m. EST, the
futures were down 0.5 to 1454. That's about two points above fair value and indicates a slight tilt toward a positive opening for stocks.
"We're really looking mixed this morning," said Jim Volk, co-director of institutional trading
. "There's good news and bad news here. The
preannouncement is a little disappointing and pours a little water on tech. But people continue to throw money at these stocks."
This despite the tone of the bond market, which has reacted very coolly to the Fed's decision to leave interest rates unchanged and maintain its neutral policy directive. The bonds
sold off modestly after the Fed's
statement made it clear that its neutral bias signified a desire to ensure "a smooth transition into the year 2000," rather than any confidence that inflationary pressures are under control.
This morning, the 30-year Treasury was down 2/32 to 95 18/32, putting its yield at 6.463%. No major economic data are scheduled for release, though the
has issued its final revision of third-quarter gross domestic product, which came in at 5.7%, two-tenths of a percentage point higher than the previous revision.
At 1:30 p.m. the Treasury will announce the results of its last monthly two-year note auction of the year. The Treasury will issue $15 billion of two-year notes.
The stock market seems relatively unconcerned about the rising yields. "You've got historically low rates here," said Volk. "Yeah, we were at 5.5%, but what's 6.5% if you're an equity investor, and your returns are so much higher than that?"
U.S. equities will have plenty of ratification around the globe if they try to go higher. Equities were leaping in early afternoon trading on the large European exchanges. Frankfurt's
was up 88.30, or 1.4%, to 6506.98, while the Paris
was 109.85 higher, or 2%, to 5639.09. London's
was up 35.2 to 6742.7.
The euro was weakening slightly from yesterday's levels, lately quoted at $1.0062.
Yesterday's Fed decision ignited high-tech and electronics stocks in Japan, helping the
rise 381.55 points, or 2.1% to 18461.93.
The foreign exchange market showed little signs of life for most of Tokyo trading, with the dollar trading around 102.10 yen before losing ground late in the session. The greenback was lately sitting at 101.63 yen.
Tokyo markets will be closed tomorrow in celebration of the Emperor's birthday.
Things were more mixed in Hong Kong, where the
sank 56.34 to 16,192.40.
Wednesday's Wake-Up Watchlist
Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures
agreed to buy
for $1.1 billion in stock.
said it gave regulatory approval to a takeover of
. CDnow will subsequently be merged with Time Warner and Sony's jointly held
Electronic Data Systems
said it has a three-year agreement with
said it will team up with a unit of
American Home Products
on an osteoporosis drug.
Separately, a Mississippi judge struck down a $150 million jury award, which was given to five former users of the "fen-phen" diet-drug combination, against American Home Products after the company settled "substantially all" of hundreds of other diet-drug lawsuits pending in the state.
Earnings/revenue reports and previews
said it will post lower fourth-quarter revenue and a loss for the period. The company said it would report a loss of 14 cents a share, compared with year-ago earnings of 10 cents. The four-analyst estimate calls for earnings of 12 cents a share.
American-Swedish drugs group
Pharmacia & Upjohn
said they estimated 2000 earnings to be from $1.55 to $1.62 a share if their planned merger went ahead. The companies said they expected annual EPS growth of more than 20% after 2000.
Pharmacia & Upjohn also said it sees reasons to sell Monsanto's agricultural unit earlier than it originally said.
reported second-quarter earnings of 37 cents a share, beating the 26-analyst estimate of 34 cents and up from the year-ago 36 cents. Despite the solid earnings report, the stock was getting hit in
trading, lately down 8 1/4 to 45 after its CFO said he expects third-quarter profits to be "comparable" with a year ago.
Offerings and stock actions
said its board voted to create a new tracking stock to follow the activity of its entertainment unit, which includes cable-television stations
American Movie Classics
said its board authorized the repurchase of up to 1 million shares.
said it set a 2-for-1 stock split and that it registered for the sale of 7.73 million common shares. The company said it was considering separating its registry and registrar services, and that it had hired advisers to review its business structure. Network Solutions also said two of its board members resigned.
Credit Suisse First Boston
raised its rating on
to buy from hold.
First Boston raised its rating on
to buy from hold.
is expected to become the first of the Baby Bell local telephone carriers allowed into the long-distance market today,
The New York Times
reported. The story said the
Federal Communications Commission
is expected to make the widely anticipated announcement today, citing people close to the decision.
said it named
executive Robert Brust as its new chief financial officer, replacing Harry Kavetas, who died in May.
The Heard on the Street column in
The Wall Street Journal
takes a look at the stock of
, which jumped more than four times in value after the company announced Monday that it will provide full Internet access at no charge, while also increasing its advertising spending. Investors easily looked past the fact that the new plan will cause the company's losses to widen. Also see yesterday's
on Juno's jumping stock.