Stocks Headed for More Gains

Futures are pointing to a higher open for blue chips and tech stocks.
Author:
Publish date:

Stock futures were pointing to a higher open Thursday as the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

geared up to make another run at history.

Futures on the

S&P 500

were adding 1 point at 1348.50, about 4 points above fair value. Nasdaq 100 futures were gaining 1 point to 1678.50, nearly 7 points ahead of fair value.

On Wednesday, rising oil prices pressured the Dow late, and the index ended about 34 points below its best-ever close. By the finish of trading, the Dow had gained 19.85 points, or 0.17%, to 11,689.24. The S&P 500 ticked up 0.25 point, or 0.02%, to 1336.59, and the

Nasdaq Composite

ended ahead by 2.05 points, or 0.09%, to 2263.39.

For the Dow, its top close was just under 11,723 on Jan. 14, 2000. The all-time intraday mark of around 11,752 was set two days before the record finish.

Though the index ventured above 11,700 during the session, jumping crude futures put a dent in the rally. Oil rose $1.95 to $62.96, and was lately following that move with another 23-cent gain to climb above $63 a barrel.

Other commodities were also stronger. Gold was rising $6.90 to $610.20 an ounce, and silver was up 12 cents at $11.82 an ounce.

After the close,

Amgen

(AMGN) - Get Report

said the Food and Drug Administration approved its colorectal cancer drug Vectibix, a product for which the company has high hopes. Analysts believe the drug could put pressure on sales of Erbitux, the colon cancer treatment from

ImClone Systems

(IMCL)

and

Bristol-Myers Squibb

(BMY) - Get Report

.

Smith International's

(SII)

shares could be on the move, as the company is set to replace

Golden West Financial

(GDW)

in the S&P 500 after the close of trading Friday. That means fund managers who track the index will need to buy Smith in order to add it to their holdings. Golden West is being acquired by

Wachovia

(WB) - Get Report

.

On the research front, ThinkEquity downgraded

Nvidia

(NVDA) - Get Report

to sell from buy and dropped its price target by $5 to $25. The firm also cut

Advanced Micro Devices

(AMD) - Get Report

to sell from buy and reduced its target price by $10 to $20. In both cases, the firm cited what it sees as a slowdown at

Dell

(DELL) - Get Report

.

To view Sandy Brown's video take on today's market, click here

.