Stock futures turned lower Thursday as a stubborn climb in energy futures overshadowed the bidding war brewing at
Index futures recently showed both the
and Nasdaq 100 trading 2 points below fair value. The 10-year Treasury bond was down 4/32 in price to yield 4.44%, 4 basis points above the two-year note, while the dollar fell against the yen and euro.
Oil futures were well above $64 a barrel Thursday as traders eyed political developments in Iran, where the government has cleared the way for a resumption of uranium enrichment as a precursor to restarting its nuclear program. February crude was recently up 61 cents to $64.55 a barrel in electronic Nymex trading.
A slew of economic data was also set to hit the tape Thursday, including the trade deficit, first-time unemployment claims, the import price index and, later, figures on the U.S. budget deficit.
Overseas markets were mostly higher, with London's FTSE 100 recently adding 0.1% to 5735 while Germany's Xetra DAX dipped 0.2% to 5521. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei rose 0.5% overnight to 16,445, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.4% to 15,719.
Stocks are coming off another up session, with the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
closing above 11,000 for the third day in a row. For the year, the Dow is up 326 points, or 3%, while the S&P 500 has risen 46 points, or 3.7%, and the
has gained 126 points, or 5.7%.
In corporate news, medical device maker Guidant is back in the arms of
Johnson & Johnson
, with its board recommending shareholders accept a takeover offer worth $23.2 billion, or $68.06 a share.
says it's still in the hunt for Guidant. It previously offered $25 billion, or $72 a share, for the company and vowed to "vigorously pursue" the transaction.
Laurels continue to be laid on
following its blowout business update on Tuesday. Bear Stearns upgraded the stock to outperform and set a $105 price target, about 25% above Wednesday's $83.90 close.
soared after the bell on an agreement to license its experimental blood processing drug nebivolol to
. Mylan will collect $75 million upfront and stands to see future royalties.
Research in Motion
announced support Thursday for two
protocols, the Google Talk instant message program and Google Local, a maps-and-directions service. Both will be available on BlackBerry.