NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The dollar strengthened slightly so far today, setting it up for a rise in the month of May, and oil was trading up as well. European stocks were trading slightly lower, as strong doubts linger over Greece's ability to meet its near-term debt obligations. Chinese stocks settled down, closing just 0.2% lower after yesterday's rout. U.S. stock index futures were trading off modestly.
In today's market rumorville roundup, we have a widely-quoted New York Post report that Intel (INTC) is nearing an agreement to buy Altera (ALTR) for approximately $15 billion, with an announcement expected in the next week. Altera was reported to have rejected a $54 per share bid from Intel a few months ago, but a weak quarter may have forced its hand to make a deal as Intel could go hostile.
Also being rumored is that Monsanto (MON) may make another run at Syngenta (SYT) after its $45 billion bid was rejected. The Financial Times is reporting that Cellectis (CLLS) is in discussion with Pfizer (PFE) about a potential sale. Pfizer already owns 9.5% of the company as is looking to beef up its immune-oncology presence.
We expect biotech and pharmaceutical stocks to see some volatility, with the start of the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting (May 29 through June 2), in Chicago.
At 8:30 a.m. the market will get the highly anticipated first-quarter revised GDP report, with estimates looking for -0.9% vs. the first reading of 0.2%.
At 9 a.m., the Milwaukee ISM for May is released, with consensus at 50. At 9:45 a.m., we'll get the Chicago Purchasing Manager report for May, with estimates at 53.0.
At 10 a.m. the University of Michigan Sentiment report for May will be released and estimates are at 89.5.
Lastly, at 1 p.m. the market will receive the Baker Hughes rig count, which has shown improvements in its rate of decline.
- Google (GOOGL) has teamed up with GoPro (GPRO) to launch a project that would allow users to create 360-degree video more easily, hoping this will lead to affordable access to virtual reality down the line. The move could be especially lucrative for Google, which has been part of the Action Alerts Plus charity portfolio, co-managed by Jim Cramer, for more than a year. Google is rated 1 -- among stocks the portfolio managers would buy right now -- and makes up 3.18% of the portfolio.
- U.K. consumer confidence fell unexpectedly in May, with optimism about the economy for the next 12 months fading fast, a survey by GfK shows. GfK said its monthly consumer confidence index, compiled mostly after the Conservative Party unexpectedly won a national election this month, slipped to +1 from +4 in April. Economists polled by Reuters had expected an unchanged reading.
- Japan's industrial output rose for the first time in three months and beat expectations in April. Industrial production increased by 1%, more than the 0.8% median of expectations.
- The head of the IMF, Christine Lagarde, has said that a Grexit - Greece leaving the eurozone -- is a possibility, but stressed this would not mean the end of the single currency union. The Fund offered Greece three more weeks to repay the 1.6 billion euros ($1.75 billion) that Greece must reimburse next month.
- Foreigners poured more than $4.6 billion into Chinese equity funds last week, more than double the previous high set in 2008.