Stocks are likely to see some weakness in early trading on Tuesday, with the major index futures currently indicating a notably lower open for the markets following the lower close seen in the previous session. The Dow futures are currently down 99 points.
The downward momentum for the markets comes as traders continue to look to cash in on the market's recent gains amid expectations of a rough earnings season.
Investors have been reacting well to news in recent weeks, sending the major averages up substantially from the multi-year lows that were hit in early March. Unfortunately, many analysts are warning that the earnings reports could easily upset the market.
Dow component Alcoa (AA) is scheduled to release its first quarter results after the close of trading, with the release of results from the aluminum producer seen as the unofficial start of the earnings reporting season.
Alcoa has said its first-quarter results would continue to be negatively affected by the troubled global economic environment that has adversely affected pricing and demand for aluminum, alumina, and aluminum products.
In other corporate news, Motorola (MOT) revealed that it expects to incur about $110 million in first quarter charges related to a previously announced reduction of 2,800 jobs. In a regulatory filing, the company disclosed that it expects to incur the charges for the first quarter.
Motorola's cost-reduction measures also include other exit-related activities, including the termination of contractual commitments and asset impairments, resulting in additional pre-tax charges of about $13 million in the first quarter of 2009.
Meanwhile, the Times of London has reported that toxic debts racked up by banks and insurers could spiral to $4 trillion. The IMF said in January that it expected the deterioration in U.S.-originated assets to reach $2.2 trillion by the end of next year.
While the economic calendar remains light today, the U.S. Federal Reserve is scheduled to release its monthly consumer credit report at 3 pm ET. Consumer credit for February is likely to show a decline of $1.5 billion.
After trending lower throughout much of the morning, stocks regained some ground over the course of afternoon trading on Monday, although they remained mostly negative. The major averages all ended the day lower after closing higher in the four previous sessions.
The notable decline seen in morning trading came as traders cashed in some of the recent gains amid some disappointing corporate news and negative analyst comments. After falling more than 150 points earlier in the day, the Dow eventually ended the session down about 40 points.
Crude oil futures are trading down $0.93 at $50.12 a barrel. On Monday, the commodity fell $1.46 to $51.05 a barrel. Gold futures, which fell $24.50 to $872.80 an ounce in the previous session, are currently moving up $5.10 to $877.90 an ounce.
On the currency front, the dollar is currently is trading at 100.183 yen compared to the 100.9901 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Monday. The dollar is currently valued at $1.3272 versus the euro compared to yesterday's $1.3416.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region closed mostly lower on Tuesday, although selling pressure was generally somewhat subdued. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 Index ended the session down 0.3 percent.
Meanwhile, the major European markets are seeing considerable weakness, adding to the losses posted on Monday. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index is down 2 percent, while the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index are both falling 1.3 percent.
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