US futures range-bound ahead of GDP data
Futures on major U.S. stock indices remained range-bound on Friday ahead of economic data including key US GDP figures from the government.
Futures on the S&P 500 are down 0.04 percent, futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average are up 0.03 percent and Nasdaq100 futures are down 0.05 percent.
Investors are eagerly waiting for the GDP numbers to understand the current situation in the world’s largest economy.
The Commerce Department is due to report advanced GDP estimate for the fourth quarter of 2010 before the market opens. Economists are forecasting that the report will show an improvement in economic activity during the October-December period on back overall improvement in economic conditions, and rising consumer spending due to the holiday season.
Economists have forecast GDP to grow by 3.5 percent in the fourth quarter compared to 2.6 percent growth reported in the third quarter.
Investors also eye Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index which is due to be released after market opens Friday. The index is expected to show that confidence levels improved in January.
On the earnings front, companies including Ford Motors, Honeywell, Dominion Resources, Chevron and Dover Corp will release their quarterly earnings during the day.
On Thursday, The S&P 500 index surpassed the 1300-point level twice, the first time the index reached that plateau since August, 2008, as U.S. stocks ended slightly up on mixed earnings reports.
The euro declined 0.02 percent to 1.3732 against the dollar and the yen gained 0.58 percent against the greenback.
Crude oil futures advanced 0.21 percent to $85.82/barrel and gold futures declined 0.36 percent.
European stock markets are currently trading mixed with FTSE 100 down by 41.98 points, DAX30 up by 12.39 points and CAC 40 up by 5.75 points.
Pre-Opening Soy Complex Market Report for 2/4/2011
March soybeans were down 1 1/4 cents late in the overnight session. Palm oil futures in Malaysia are closed for the holiday, and so are China futures. Outside market forces look quiet as financial markets await employment data today. The market inched lower overnight after seeing a firm tone early, as a lack of fresh news from Egypt and quiet outside markets helped spark some light selling. Asian traders are on holiday, but there is growing concern that the jump in short-term import demand, such as what was seen for wheat, could spread to the palm and soybean oil markets if food security issues heighten further. Flooding in Malaysia and the port strike in Argentina has helped increase short-term demand for vegetable oils. India is tendering to buy 21,000 tonnes of palm oil and 1,500 tonnes of soybean oil for immediate delivery. Iraq is tendering for 32,000 tonnes of sunflower oil, and Bangladesh is tendering for 12,500 tonnes of soybean oil. Thailand is apparently planning to buy 120,000 tonnes of crude palm oil to ease domestic cooking oil shortage. The soybean market closed moderately lower on the session yesterday and near the lows of the day, as long liquidation selling emerged late in the day to pressure. The rally into the mid-session pushed the market to a new contract high, but the market lacked follow-through buying support, and outside market factors turned sour. The strong US dollar and increased concerns over violence in Egypt helped push the market lower. Weekly export sales for soybeans came in at 1.032 million tonnes for old crop and 3.076 million for new crop for a total of 4.107 million tonnes, which was well above trade expectations. Cumulative soybean sales stand at 88.7% of the USDA forecast for the 2010/11 marketing year versus a 5 year average of 76.1% for this time of the year. Sales of just 158,000 tonnes are needed each week to reach the USDA old crop export forecast. Meal sales came in at 177,900 metric tonnes versus90,000 tonnes needed each week to reach the USDA forecast. Net oil sales came in at 5,000 metric tonnes, which was below trade expectations, as there was a cancellation of 30,700 tonnes to an unknown destination. Cumulative soybean oil sales stand at 85.7% of the USDA forecast for 2010/11 marketing year versus a 5 year average of 41.5%. Sales of 5,000 metric tonnes are needed each week to reach the USDA forecast. While the Argentina strike is temporarily on hold as unions negotiate for higher wages for port workers, there is still uncertainty over the longer-term supply flow from Argentina, and this along with the outlook for drier weather over the next week may have helped provide some underlying support.
The port bow railing of the Titanic lies in 12,600 feet of water about 400 miles east of Nova ScotiaThe port bow railing of the Titanic lies in 12,600 feet of water about 400 miles east of Nova Scotia
The port bow railing of the RMS Titanic lies in 12,600 feet of water about 400 miles east of Nova ScotiaThe port bow railing of the RMS Titanic lies in 12,600 feet of water about 400 miles east of Nova Scotia
Digital Globe goes IPO this week; 5th largest in the US this year
Digital Globe Inc, a satellite image provider, is set to debut on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday with a planned $250 million IPO offering.
The Longmont, Colorado-based company originally filed to go public in April of last year. Its offering comes at an ideal time as it may get a boost from the Obama administration's plans to use more commercial satellite imagery for intelligence gathering.
The company offers a library of earth imagery used in commercial, defense, intelligence, and civil government applications. Last year alone, it derived three-quarters of its 2008 revenue from the U.S. government.
Digital Globe plans to sell 14.7 million shares at $16-18 each. If shares sell at the high-end of this range, the company’s valuation could potentially be in excess of $800 million. It will trade under the ticker symbol “DGI” and it will be the 5th IPO of the year in the United States.
The company, which had revenues of $275 million and net income of $53 million in 2008, would see only a fraction of the cash from the IPO as over 90 percent of the shares included are owned by existing investors.
A century has passed since the worst maritime disaster in the world’s history killed over 1,500 innocent souls in the year 1912. However, it is astounding to find that far too many people don't know if the sinking of Titanic was “REAL,” and are still discovering that it was a true event.
Last week the world marked the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the ill-fated RMS Titanic, the largest and most luxurious passenger liner that went down after hitting a huge iceberg mid-Atlantic, southeast of Cape Race. Five of its major compartments had ruptured instantly and the ship sank within a few hours after the crash, while on its maiden voyage.
Titanic’s sinking has inspired a lengthy reference and description not only in history, literature, school/college course books and broadcasting channels like the Discovery and National Geographic, but also in the world famous movie by James Cameron, now in the 3D version as well.
However, it is appalling to find that some young and learned blokes are still unaware that the historical incident was true.
“Nobody told me Titanic was real… was it?”
“I have just realized Titanic was a real event.”
Never knew Titanic was real… thought was just another movie I haven’t yet seen.”
“I never knew Titanic ever happened… did it??”
These are the posts of a few young Twitter users who posted their ignorance on recently learning about the real life disaster.
“I thought Titanic was just a movie, I didn’t know it was real tho,” a user wrote on Twitter.
“The Titanic was a real holly shit I’m never going on a cruise,” Mr Dragon expressed his distress on learning the fact.
Well, certainly it is about the perception that gives an insight of where young people are heading towards.
It is indeed harrowing to believe that most teenagers still think Titanic was just an eternal love story of Jack and Rose but little do they know about the real dreadful incident that killed thousands of people and orphaned their children.
“Didn’t know Titanic actually happened: O I thought it was just a film!,” wrote a Twitter user in the thread.
“Only just found out Titanic was real,” another user, Jas Tweeted.
A user posted a screen-shot of the thread on Twitter, last week and got over 76,000 viewers. Learned folks are apparently stunned to read the thread. Some of them even penned down their distress. Here are some comments:
“American Education system in action :D” said a user Ryan.
Another said, “What! I thought education was real. I thought people learned stuff.”
Interestingly, a Facebook user who shared the post for his friends said: “It is a new kind of dumb… redefining ignorance,” referring to the conversation in the thread.
Tell us what you feel about it.
Also, check out some images of RMS Titanic, the real ship, world's largest ship then, that snak a century ago.