European markets were open again for business this morning after an extended holiday, helping to give some lift to preopen activity stateside. But let's give an accurate read of the morning so far -- it continues to be quiet as many investors take an extended holiday.
Does your voice seem to echo in your office these days?
The good news is that just after 7 a.m. EST, futures trading on the
exchange were pointing to a positive open. Futures for the large-cap
were 44 points above
fair value, as calculated by
S&P 500 futures were 6 points above fair value, also calculated by
. Fair value helps gauge how stocks will trade in early action, and today signs are positive for both tech stocks and the broad market.
But higher opens these days don't always translate into sustained gains for the day. And volume this week is expected to remain light, which can make stocks volatile.
Taking a peak at action on
, the electronic exchange where investors can get in their trades during traditionally off hours, we find that only a handful of stocks are yet in play.
, the seemingly ever-embattled telecom giant, was off 81 cents, or 4.6%, to $17.
, an AT&T rival, was also losing, recently down 38 cents, or 2.7%, to $13.63. There is no widespread news on either company, only a general perception that telecom companies can't get any breaks these days.
The biggest loser so far, however, is
, which should be very active today. The provider of software security systems after yesterday's close said it expects to post a fourth-quarter loss of between $130 million and $140 million due to reduced orders and a slowing economy. It was off $5.25, or 44.7%, to $6.50 on Instinet. Network Associates did not provide earnings-per-share figures. Eleven analysts polled by
First Call/Thomson Financial
are calling for the company to earn 31 cents a share for the quarter. The company earned 20 cents in the year-ago period.
complete story about the company's news.
Among early winners,
recently gained 44 cents, or 1.8%, to $24.25 on Instinet. The company makes products that help Web sites improve speed and reliability. And software developer
of France was up $2.69, or 4.8%, to $58.50.
At midsession, the major European markets were higher. In London, the
was gaining 86, or 1.5%, to 6183.50. Across the channel and through the Chunnel, the
in Paris was up 71.25, or 1.39%, to 5854.98 and the German
was 69.58, or 1.06%, higher to 6320.98. Asian markets were mixed, with the
squeaking 10.15 higher to 14748.36 and the
edging 26.36 lower to 13981.49.
Global Indices page, where we have complete information on world markets.
For more on after-hours trading, TheStreet.com offers complete coverage of the most recent evening trading session in Tuesday's Night Watch.