Bulls held sway in Thursday's premarket session amid positive earnings in the technology sector and relatively low oil prices.
Index futures recently showed the
trading 9 points above fair value, while the Nasdaq 100 was set for a 17-point gain. The 10-year Treasury bond was unchanged in price to yield 4.48%, while the dollar was hovering against the yen and euro.
Oil ticked modestly higher after falling more than $2 a barrel in the previous two sessions. In electronic Nymex trading, March crude was up 27 cents to $66.12 a barrel. The contract slid $1.21 a barrel on Wednesday as an Energy Department report showed a decline in crude inventories offset by builds in gasoline and distillates.
Overseas markets were higher, with London's FTSE 100 rising 0.4% to 5725 and Germany's Xetra DAX gaining 1.5% to 5509. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei rose 1.5% overnight to 15,891, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was little changed at 15,520.
Stocks fell Wednesday as a crush of earnings and mergers news left investors fatigued. The S&P 500 lost 2 points to 1265. At this level, the broad index has made up just 4 of the 24 points it lost in last Friday's 2% selloff. The
has retaken 12 of the 54 points it lost in the Friday rout.
Thursday is another huge earnings day, with five
components set to report, including
, which last night saw investor Kirk Kerkorian add 12 million shares to his ownership stake.
reported a fourth-quarter profit of $700.6 million, or 64 cents a share, on a 6% revenue rise to $3.88 billion. Adjusted earnings of 80 cents a share were 4 cents ahead of estimates.
fourth-quarter earnings fell about 1% from a year ago to $1.3 billion, matching estimates despite continuing margin deterioration reflecting sales in developing markets.
To view David Peltier's video take on today's premarket action, click here
Futures grabbed inspiration Thursday from a plethora of second-tier technology firms that reported better-than-expected earnings last night, including
, which said reported adjusted fourth-quarter earnings of 20 cents a share, 4 cents ahead of estimates.
said first-quarter sales rose 64% from a year ago, while adjusted earnings of 2 cents a share beat estimates by a penny.
said fourth-quarter earnings rose 20% to $69.7 million, or 19 cents a share, matching estimates. At $281.9 million, roughly matching estimates.
Other companies reporting strong quarters were