Current Futures: Dow -17.00, S&P -3.20, NASDAQ -2.50

Asian markets continue to march in to the green, even though the U.S. futures are trading slightly under the break-even line. 

Equity markets continue the same pattern set during the previous trading sessions. Drug-makers posted significant gains as the swine flu threat level was raised, while tourism companies and airlines lost important ground tonight. Railway corporations also picked up gains in the Asian equity markets, lead by the East Japan Railway company, which announced a share buyback program.

During the U.S. session, airline companies posted significant declines, reaching up to 17% in some cases. The selling wave was tempered during the early part of the day, but became more impulsive as crude oil recovered some of its losses. The S&P index dropped for the first time in the last three days of trading, while the MSCI World Index fell for the first time in the last four days. 

“The financial sector ETF saw some light volatility on Monday, as traders and investors focused on other key sectors,” Trade Team notes. “However, investors remain skeptical that everything is fine in the financial sector, something that the stress test result may reveal. The word on the street is that the regional banks will require more funds.”

Overnight, the Nikkei rose 55.98 points (0.64%) to 8,782.32. The Australian S&P/Asx gained 27.00 points (0.72%) to 3,758.60. 

Crude oil for May delivery was recently trading at $50.05 per barrel, down by $0.10.

Gold for May delivery was recently trading up down $9.00 to $899.20.