Stock Futures Little Changed with Focus on Corporate Earnings

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stock futures were little changed Monday in the wake of the S&P 500's record run last week as investors weighed slowing growth at McDonald's (MCD)versus higher-than-expect profits at Hasbro (HAS), the children and family entertainment products company.

Futures for the S&P 500 were up 2.25 points, or 0.15 points below fair value, to 1,738.75 after the benchmark index on Friday rose, marking an advance of 22% in 2013, its best year-to-date performance since 1997. This came as investors cheered the possibility of a delay to tapering measures from the Federal Reserve and strong earnings from heavyweights such as Google GOOG.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 7 points, or 10.65 points below fair value, to 15,323. Futures for the Nasdaq were up 9.3 points, or 5.42 points above fair value, to 3,351.3.

Earnings reports were garnering mixed reactions so far on Monday.

Hasbro was ticking up 1.08% to $47.75 after posting third-quarter earnings that beat estimates by two cents at $1.31 a share on revenue that exceeded expectations as international strength offset weakness in the U.S. market.

McDonald's shares were slumping by 1.67% to $93.55 after the hamburger chain reported third-quarter earnings of $1.52 a share, topping expectations by a penny, on revenue that matched estimates. McDonald's said that global October comparable sales will likely be relatively flat.

VF Corp. (VFC) was gaining 2.65% to $209.72 after the global apparel company exceeded third-quarter expectations by 13 cents at $3.91 a share and announced a four-for-one stock split and 21% increase in its quarterly dividend rate.

Halliburton (HAL) was shedding 0.9% to $52 after the oil services company reported third-quarter earnings that beat expectations by a penny at 83 cents a share on revenue that just missed expectations. The company said that it expects to see margin improvement during 2014 as its activity in the Gulf of Mexico expands.

Netflix (NFLX),the video streaming service, is forecast to report after Monday's closing bell third-quarter earnings of 49 cents a share on revenue of $1.1 billion. Shares were edging up 1.54% to $338.64.

Analysts expect chipmaker Texas Instruments (TXN) to report third-quarter earnings of 53 cents a share on revenue of $3.23 billion after the market close.

Home resale data is on tap Monday. The National Association of Realtors is expected to report at 10 a.m. EDT that existing home sales slipped to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.32 million in September from 5.48 million in August, according to a survey of economists by Thomson Reuters.

Other data on tap this week include the September government jobs report on Tuesday. The report has been delayed for more than two weeks amid the shutdown of government services. Ahead of the September employment report and the October government job report that will be due in a few weeks, expectations are that the Fed will unlikely embark on any tapering of its bond-purchasing program given the uncertainties surrounding the impact of the partial government shutdown and protracted fiscal debates on the U.S. economy.

Chicago Fed President Charles Evans affirmed during an interview on CNBC Monday that the central bank may hold off on dialing back its asset purchases. "I think we need a couple of good labor reports and evidence of increasing growth, GDP growth," he said. "It's probably going to take a few months to sort that out."

The FTSE in London was gaining 0.86% and the DAX in Germany was down 0.09%. The Nikkei 225 in Japan closed ahead by 0.91% and the Hong Kong Hang Seng finished higher by 0.42%.

December crude oil contracts were down 81 cents to $100.30 a barrel and December gold futures were up 40 cents to $1,315 an ounce.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury was slipping 4/32, raising the yield to 2.597%. The dollar was up 0.03% to $79.68 according to the U.S. dollar index.

-- Written by Andrea Tse in New York

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Andrea Tse.>  

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