Stocks could see a bit of selling in the early going.
At 9:05 a.m. EST, the
futures were down 1.9, nearly 2 points below fair value and indicating some modest selling for the broad market.
"My feeling is they're going to try to take them higher again," said John Manahan, head trader at
Brown Brothers Harriman
. "We've had two days of backing and filling. There's been no sign of panic here. If anything, people are trying to do a little bottom-fishing here" in the broad market.
But few are talking about the broad market the morning after
Tech has seen a lot of reflexive snapbacks from big selloffs this year. But you may have noticed considerably fewer examples of the opposite phenomenon, the reflexive pullback from a big run-up. Yesterday, after all, the indefatigable Nasdaq gained more than 3%, and thus you might expect the
futures to be pointing toward a good amount of consolidation in technology stocks at the open.
Yes, you might, if you'd just arrived on earth from a distant, unknown planet capable of sustaining human life. Tech may sell off as the day goes on, but the
futures were lately down just 2 to 4669, at worst a flattish indication. Chalk it up to the incredibly positive sentiment surrounding the sector, which hasn't seen a decidedly negative preopen indication since the
employment cost index
gross domestic product
came in stronger than expected way back on
'It's great. It's like hair -- it keeps growing.'
-- Hugh Johnson, chief investment officer at First Albany
Tech is on an unparalleled run, and bearish investors who don't want to get hurt would do well to get out of the way. Value managers can only wait for the fund-flow fever to break. The latest data from
AMG Data Services
show that an overwhelming 76% of the money that investors have put into equity funds this year has gone into aggressive growth, tech, small-cap and biotech funds.
Portfolio managers aren't just chasing stocks. It's gotten to the point where the stocks themselves are chasing managers.
my position in
in late December," said Hugh Johnson, chief investment officer at
. "And I cut it again yesterday, because it got to 11% of my portfolio. I cut it back to 8%, but it'll soon be back at 11%. It's great. It's like hair -- it keeps growing."
One stock that has been chasing a lot of managers lately is
, and it looks like it's got some more to run this morning. Rambus has set plans for a 4-for-1 stock split, and was trading at 418 on
, way up from last night's close of 379 7/16.
were each trading lower on Instinet after Qwest said that a major phone company -- which nearly everyone believes to be
-- has pulled out of discussions to buy the two companies. Qwest was down at 51 from a close of 57 1/8, while U.S. West was down at 68 1/2from a close of 75 3/4.
The bond market was edging lower, with the 10-year note down 7/32 to 100 27/32 and yielding 6.385%. No major data are scheduled for release.
The large European indices were moving higher in afternoon trade, paced by the Paris
, which was up 55.78, or 0.9%, to 6479.21. Frankfurt's
was up 40.40 to 7989.55, while the London
was up 68.4, or 1.1%, to 6600.5.
The euro was lately trading at $0.9621.
Asian markets were generally firm overnight.
In Hong Kong, the
added 194.83, or 1.1%, to 17,831.86, thanks largely to a rally in
, which rose 5.9%.
Cyclical stocks caught bids in Tokyo after Japan's
Economic Planning Agency
said that core private machinery orders rose 0.8% in January, confounding expectations for a 7.7% decline. That data helped the
close up 88.07 to 19,750.40.
But other Japanese indices fell. The
index, which is composed of all shares listed on the
Tokyo Stock Exchange's
first section, fell 10.47 to 1633.30. The
small-cap index shed 45.82, or 1.9%, to 117.04, while the Nikkei
shares slipped 45.82, or 1.9%, to 2422.67.
The dollar eased slightly to 106.28 yen. The downside is limited by fears of another
Bank of Japan
intervention and expectations that today's improved capital spending data could presage a better-than-expected report on fourth-quarter gross domestic product next week.
The greenback was lately trading at 106.67 yen.
For a look at stocks in the preopen news, see Stocks to Watch, published separately.