RTTNews - US stocks were poised for a lackluster open Wednesday morning in New York as oil rose above $60 a barrel and President Obama's special economic advisory board prepare to meet in Washington, DC.
As of 6:15 am ET, the Dow Futures were up 20 points, the NASDAQ Futures were up 2 points, and the S&P Futures were up 3 points.
On Tuesday, the major averages were unable to sustain any major moves, with the Dow and S&P 500 drifting into negative territory just ahead of the closing bell.
The Dow closed lower by 29.23 at 8474.85, while the S&P 500 closed down by 1.58 at 908.13. On the other hand, the Nasdaq was able to hold on to thin gains, finishing up by 2.18 at 1734.54.
With a relatively light economic calendar on Wednesday, traders will pay close attention to the release of minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee's April meeting.
Market players will look to the minutes to gain some near-term economic outlook and any hint of policy moves by the Fed. The minutes are scheduled for release at 2:00 p.m. ET.
Also today, Former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker will convene a high profile economic panel tasked with advising President Obama.
Computer and printer manufacturer Hewlett-Packard Co. (HP) said Tuesday after the markets closed that its second quarter profit fell 17% from last year amid sharp revenue drops in its PC, printer and server businesses in a challenging economic environment. The company reiterated its fiscal year 2009 non-GAAP earnings outlook, but gave a disappointing revenue forecast for the fiscal year.
Chipmaker Analog Devices Inc. Tuesday said its second quarter profit declined from last year, as demand for chips dropped with the economic crisis restricting consumer spending. The company's quarterly non-GAAP earnings, however, exceeded the Street expectations as well as its own estimate. Analog Devices also provided its third quarter earnings outlook, above current analysts' consensus.
Bank of America Corp. (BAC) said Tuesday evening that it has raised $13.47 billion in new equity through the sale of common stock. The sale is part of the company's efforts to address a $33.9 billion capital shortfall identified by the U.S. government following the conclusion of the stress test of the nation's nineteen largest banks.
General merchandise and food discount retailer Target Corp. (TGT) will fork out first-quarter results before market opens Wednesday, with analysts projecting earnings of $0.59 per share on revenues of $14.81 billion. Earnings for the year-ago period were $0.74 per share and revenues totaled $14.8 billion in 2008.
Deere & Co. (DE), the world's largest maker of agricultural equipment, is scheduled to release its second-quarter earnings results before the market opens Wednesday. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters are looking for earnings of $1.07 per share, on revenue of $6.60 billion, for the quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.
The price of oil remained above $60 a barrel in early dealing Wednesday morning. With the dollar on the defensive versus other majors and the global economy showing signs of life, oil continue to find support support. Wednesday morning, the U.S. Energy Department is due to release its weekly report on fuel inventories.
Asian stocks were mixed Wednesday, but Tokyo's Nikkei finished slightly higher. The major European averages were hugging the unchanged line in early dealing.
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