The U.S. stock index futures pointed to a slightly lower open Tuesday as investors maintained caution ahead of the quarterly earnings reports to be announced by major corporates.
The futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down 0.03 percent, the futures on the Standard & Poor's 500 Index were down 0.05 percent and those on the Nasdaq 100 Index were down 0.13 percent.
Investors will continue to focus on the earnings reports with Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), Valero Energy Corporation (NYSE: VLO), United States Steel Corporation (NYSE: X), Tyco International Ltd. (NYSE: TYC), Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE), EMC Corporation (NYSE: EMC), Danaher Corporation (NYSE: DHR), Broadcom Corporation (Nasdaq: BRCM) and Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) expected to announce their quarterly results Tuesday.
On Monday, the U.S. stocks were mixed as investors remained watchful in spite of the encouraging economic indicators. According to the data released Monday by the Census Bureau, durable goods orders, which measure the change in the total value of new orders for the long-lasting manufactured goods, rose to 4.6 percent in December, from 0.7 percent increase in November. The core durable goods orders for December, which excluded the transportation items, rose to 1.3 percent, from a 1.2 percent increase in November.
Meanwhile, Yahoo Inc (NASDAQ: YHOO) reported Monday that the company’s net income dropped to $272.3 million or $0.23 per share in the fourth quarter, from $295.6 million or $0.24 in the same period the earlier year. Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT) reported that the company’s net income fell to $697 million or $1.04 per share in the fourth quarter, from $1.55 billion or $2.32 per share in the same period the earlier year.
VMware Inc. (NYSE: VMW) reported that the company’s net income rose to $205.8 million or $0.47 per share in the fourth quarter, from $200.4 million or $0.46 per share in the same period the earlier year.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.10 percent, the S&P 500 Index was down 0.18 percent and the Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.15 percent.
European markets were mixed Tuesday with London's FTSE 100 moving up 8.91 points, Germany's DAX 30 index rising 9.14 points and France's CAC 40 declining 3.48 points.
Most of the Asian stock markets rose Tuesday with China’s Shanghai Composite rising 12.47 points, India’s Sensex gaining 7.91 points, Japan’s Nikkei moving up 42.41 points and South Korea’s Kospi Composite Index advancing 16.25 points. The Reserve Bank of India cut Tuesday the repo rate by 25 bps to 7.75 percent and also slashed the cash reserve ratio by 25 bps to 4 percent.