There were earnings announcements
galore last night with a slew of mostly better-than-expected earnings. Still, stock futures weren't celebrating this morning because many of those "positive" earnings actually were just beating lowered performance estimates or were tempered by dismal forecasts for future earnings.
Early on, futures indicated a flat to slightly negative opening for the major stock markets. The
S&P 500 futures on
lately were off 0.2 to 1342, about 3 points below
fair value as calculated by
. The thinly traded
futures, which essentially track large-cap tech stocks, were down 2.50 to 2579.00, about 3 points below fair value as calculated by
. Fair value is a good gauge of how stocks will trade in early action.
Big Blue was getting the blue ribbon in preopen trading.
yesterday after the close posted earnings for the fourth quarter that were 2 cents above estimates, and it was being duly rewarded. It was recently jumping $6.06, or 6.3%, to $102.75 on
, the electronic brokerage where investors can get in their trades before the bell. Earlier this morning, the stock had been up more than $9.
last night took a close look at
Europe's major indices were trudging along with no clear direction this morning. France's
was off 0.19%, Germany's
was down 0.7% and the U.K.'s
was gaining 0.1%. Major Asian markets rallied, with Japan's battered
jumping 1.5% overnight and Hong Kong's
For more on world markets, check out
global indices information.
For Wednesday's postclose trading, see The Night Watch.