RTTNews - U.S stock futures point to a flat opening Wednesday morning, as traders might look to lock in gains following recent scintillating rally, driven by optimism about recovery and satisfactory earnings from companies. Technical indicators point to overheating in the markets. Weak sentiment across the rest of the global markets might also impact sentiment, as traders await yet another round of earnings results and a slew of economic data, including the job numbers.

As of 6.30 am ET, the Dow Futures were down 2.00 points and the Nasdaq 100 futures were down 1.75 points. However, the S&P 500 is marginally up 0.10 points.

On the economic front, traders will be presented with ADP National Employment report at 8.15 a.m ET which will throw light on non-farm private unemployment numbers for July, which is a sort of a prelude for the key Labor Department's monthly job report slated for release on Friday. Economists expect that the private sector shed 340,000 jobs during the month.

Among the other major economic numbers, the Commerce Department will report the durable goods report for June. Analysts expect a 0.5% decline in durable goods for the month. The Institute of Supply Management will release the non-manufacturing survey results for July at 10.00 am ET. Economists expect the purchasing managers' index to show a reading of 48, after having increased to 47 in June.

The customary weekly crude oil inventory will be released by the Energy Information Administration at 10.30 am ET.

Traders will continue to focus on earnings. Among the major companies, Procter and Gamble (PG) will be releasing its earnings report before the market opens for trading, while Cisco Systems (CSCO) will be reporting the results after the market closes for trading.

Traders will also digest earnings from Kraft Foods (KFT), which showed that its second quarter profit increased by 11%, driven by solid performance across all geographies, improved product mix and lower costs due to the completion of the 2004-2008 restructuring program.

In corporate news, Britain's Lloyds Banking Group revealed that it has incurred a net loss of $6.8 billion for the first half, hurt by a sharp rise in bad debts from the HBOS business which was acquired by the bank earlier in the year. The total bad debts of the bank rose to $22 billion.

Zurich-based insurance company, Swiss Re revealed that it swung to a loss in the second quarter, hurt by charges on corporate bond hedges, securitized products and credit spreads.

Oil field services company Baker Hughes Inc. (BHI) revealed earlier in the day that it has posted a steep decline in second-quarter profit, hurt by the downturn in North American and International drilling activity.

Germany-based sportswear company Adidas AG revealed that its second quarter net profit declined sharply by 93% hurt by currency losses and increasing competition. Revenue declined 3% during the period.

On Tuesday, stocks ended in positive territory amid choppy trading as positive economic data on pending home sales and personal income & spending more than offset weak earnings results from home-building companies such as Pulte Homes and DR Horton. Buying interest in late session on hopes of recovery helped the indices end above the unchanged line.

The Dow closed up by 33.63 points or 0.4% at 9,320, the Nasdaq advanced by 2.70 points or 0.1% to 2,011 and the S&P 500 rose by 3.02 points or 0.3% to 1,006.

Oil Light sweet crude oil price for September delivery is presently quoted at $71.07 a barrel, down $0.35 from its previous close $71.42 a barrel in New York on Tuesday.

Dollar The US dollar is weakening against the pound, but it is trading slightly higher against the yen and the euro.

World Markets The Asian markets snapped their gains and ended in negative territory as traders preferred to lock gains ahead of earnings and key economic numbers later in the week. European markets are trading in positive territory after opening slightly weaker, led by banks after France-based bank Societe Generale reported better than expected earnings results.

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