Preopen Trading: InFocus Gets a Boost; U.S. Equities Expected to Open Flat - TheStreet

Preopen Trading: InFocus Gets a Boost; U.S. Equities Expected to Open Flat

European markets generally lower; Asian markets mixed.
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Among the stocks getting a boost in preopen trading is

InFocus

(INFS)

, which will be added to the

S&P Midcap 400 Index

at the close of trading Sept. 14,

Standard & Poor's

announced yesterday after the close. The stock, which closed at $49.44 yesterday, was lately quoted at $52.38 on

Instinet

.

The S&P Midcap 400 has been one of the best-performing indices this year, as the market has broadened following the tech-led collapse in March.

Futures are lower today, but not far from fair value, indicating a flat open for the U.S. equity market. The

S&P 500

futures were lately quoted at 1526.30, 2.7 points below the Wednesday close, but still 1.3 points above fair value. The

Nasdaq 100

futures lately traded at 4007.50, 13.04 points below fair value, indicating a bit of weakness in the Nasdaq at the open.

Semiconductor equipment name

SpeedFam

(SFAM)

could lose ground today. The company said Thursday it expects to report a fiscal first-quarter operating loss of 23 to 27 cents a share, due to a delay in the delivery of a number of tools. The

First Call/Thomson Financial

consensus was for earnings of 12 cents per share. The stock hasn't traded on Instinet, according to Instinet officials.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index component

BroadVision

(BVSN) - Get Report

was higher in preopen trading, up to $38.75 from yesterday's $37.94 close. The company announced an agreement with

IBM

(IBM) - Get Report

that will allow IBM to use BroadVision's applications on its RS/6000 servers.

European markets were generally lower on worries of higher oil prices. London's

FTSE

dropped 51.30, or 0.8%, to 6637.90; Paris'

CAC-40

fell 77.6, or 1.14%, to 6756.86; and Frankfurt's

Xetra Dax

dropped 44.64, or 0.6%, to 7328.70.

Japanese markets rose, despite a

cut in the country's sovereign debt rating by

Moody's Investors Service

, a cut that was rumored in recent weeks. Moody's cut its rating to Aa2 from Aa1, but investors ignored the news, and dollar/yen has barely reacted, trading at 105.48, up 0.40.

The

Nikkei 225

index gained 201.09, or 1.2%, to close at 16,501.55, while the

Topix

index, which includes all shares listed on the

Tokyo Stock Exchange's

first section, climbed 23.59, or 1.6%, to end at 1509.88. The

Jasdaq

small-cap index rose 0.54 to stand at 80.69.

Hong Kong's

Hang Seng

index fell 156.50 to close at 17,275.45 amid extremely thin trading. Elsewhere in

Asia, Korea's

Kospi

index lost 2.69 to close at 653.68 and Taiwan's

TWSE

index slipped 62.94 to stand at 7367.99.

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