Stock futures gain as M&A boosts investor sentiment

By @ibtimes on

Stock index futures indicated a Wall Street rise of about 1 percent at the open on Monday after last week's sell-off as investors welcomed a deal by AT&T to buy the T-Mobile business from Deutsche Telekom.

* Telecommunications shares will be in the spotlight after AT&T Inc said it planned to pay $39 billion for Deutsche Telekom AG's T-Mobile USA, sparking a sharp rally in European telecom shares.

* Deutsche Telecom rose 13 percent and Vodafone Plc was up 4.4 percent. AT&T shares were up 1.9 percent at $28.47 in premarket trade.

* Investors kept a close eye on news coming out of Japan, where power cables have been connected to all six nuclear reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant damaged by an earthquake and tsunami. The World Health Organization said radiation in food after an earthquake damaged a Japanese nuclear plant was a serious situation.

* The market also closely followed Libya, where Western powers launched a second wave of air strikes early Monday after halting the advance of Muammar Gaddafi's forces on Benghazi and targeting air defenses to let their planes patrol the skies. Brent crude oil futures for May jumped $1.94 to $115.87 a barrel

* Billionaire investor Warren Buffett believes Japan's devastating earthquake is the kind of extraordinary event that creates a buying opportunity for shares in Japanese companies. He spoke during a visit to a South Korean factory run by a company owned by one of his funds.

* S&P 500 futures rose 14.7 points and were above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures jumped 117 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures put on 26 points.

* European stocks <.FTEU3> were up 1.6 percent early Monday, powered by surging telecoms shares. Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.

* U.S. stocks gained Friday after a week of volatility but investors were reluctant to make big bets due to turmoil in the Middle East and Japan's nuclear crisis.

(Reporting by Angela Moon; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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