Current Futures: Dow -19.00, S&P -3.20, NASDAQ -0.50

Asian markets posted small gains tonight, while the U.S. futures turned negative even with the S&P erasing the 2009 declines during the spot session.

“The global equity markets were propelled by two better than expected reports on Monday: pending home sales and consumer spending. The two reports continued the recent trend, which points out that the contraction phase is slowing down,” Trade Team said. “Global markets started the rally in March, when representatives of the banking sector declared that the financial institutions started the recovery process in the first three months of the year. Additionally, the rally was fueled by a number of reports that printed better than expected results, adding more green shots and improving the overall optimism,” they added.

During the Asian session, the top gainers were in the financial and raw materials sectors. Financial companies rose as Goldman upgraded its rating on the industry ahead of the stress-test results, while Wells Fargo surged 23.66% after Warren Buffet praised the company (which he also owns). Commodity-stocks advanced tonight, as the price of commodities rose again on optimism that the global economy will soon start to expand. In particular, oil and soybeans are trading near the highest value observed over the last few months of trading. 

Overnight, the Japanese Nikkei is closed for a second consecutive day. The Australian S&P/Asx gained 0.90 points (0.02%) to 3,883.90. 

Crude oil for May delivery was recently trading at $54.20 per barrel, down by $0.20.

Gold for May delivery was recently trading higher by $2.10 to $904.30.