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Qualcomm

(QCOM) - Get Qualcomm Inc Report

(say that in your best Patrick Stewart voice) is the morning's strongest mover in preopen action, gaining $6.19 to $69 on electronic trading network

Instinet

after reporting earnings of 25 cents a share and

beating estimates by a penny.

One of the morning's most active names is

ASM Lithography

(ASML) - Get ASML Holding NV Report

, gaining $1.69 to $29.63 on 51,300 shares after positive comments yesterday from the company's CEO.

Stocks look to open stronger, with the

S&P 500 futures gaining nearly 2 points, about 5 points above fair value. The

Nasdaq 100

futures are up nearly 16 points to 3350, about 33.5 points above fair value, indicating a firm open for the market.

The market's health may depend on this morning's October

unemployment report, released at 8:30 a.m. EST. Economists are looking for

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job growth of 184,000, a bit under the average during the last year, which has shown growth of 209,000 new jobs every month. Evidence of a slowing economy could pressure the market, but it could also continue to improve the interest-rate picture, a positive for the stock market. Average hourly earnings are expected to rise 0.3%; an upside surprise could also hurt as rising wages are one indicator of inflation.

Instinet's most active was

Corning

(GLW) - Get Corning Inc Report

up 25 cents to $71.50 on 85,000 shares. And

Pepsico

(PEP) - Get PepsiCo, Inc. Report

lost ground after the

Wall Street Journal

reported its unsuccessful effort to buy

Quaker Oats

( OAT). The stock was down $2.06 to $45.

European shares were marginally higher nearing midsession. France's

CAC-40

was lately up 0.1%; Germany's

Xetra Dax

lately gained 0.6%; and England's

FTSE 100

was up 0.3% near midday.

Asian markets were mixed. Hong Kong's

Hang Seng

gained 302.58, or 2%, to 15594.12. Japan's

Nikkei 225

rose 34.61 to 14837.78. (For more, see today's

Asian Markets Update.)

For Thursday's postclose trading, see The Night Watch.