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Current Futures: Dow +87.00, S&P +8.60, NASDAQ +5.25

U.S. markets head higher, extending the gains made by the futures market during the European session. However, following the template set over the last few weeks of trading, the market is still lacking a solid direction and is posting rather small gains.

Earlier in the day, European markets advanced as much as 2%, the most over the last few weeks of trading, TheLFB-Forex.com Trade Team said. European markets gained ground after a report showed that consumer confidence in the Euro-area reached a seven-month high, something that might suggest that consumer spending will pick up later this year. The upside action in the European markets helped the S&P futures turn into the green.

In the U.S. market, the only sector that is currently declining is the real estate sector. Other than that, every other sector in the U.S. market is currently heading higher, but the gains posted are relatively small so far. Moreover, even the raw materials sector advanced only 1% until now, even though crude oil had one of the strongest days since the current bull rally started in February, TheLFB-Forex.com Trade Team noted.

Shortly following the real estate sector, the healthcare index was the second worst performing sector in the U.S. market, but still the index traded above the break-even line. Regardless of today’s performances, last week the healthcare companies were among the best performing in the S&P 500, as investors try to gauge the congress’ intention over the healthcare reform.

On Thursday, the Dow Jones Index gained 64.01 points (0.76%) to 8,502.40, while the S&P 500 index gained 5.91 points (0.64%) to 924.81

Crude oil for July delivery was recently trading at $71.50 per barrel, higher by $2.30.

Gold for July delivery was recently trading lower by $0.30 to $940.70.

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