US stocks were set to take a turn for the worse Tuesday morning in New York as Alcoa prepared to kicked off a corporate earnings season that is expected to delivery grim results.

As of 6:15 am ET, the Dow Futures were down 80 points, the NASDAQ Futures were down 7 points, and the S&P Futures were down 8 points.

Stocks closed lower on Monday as traders cashed in some of the recent gains amid some disappointing corporate news and negative analyst comments.

Monday, the Department of Justice announced that Andrew Bodnar, a former senior executive of Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. (BMY: News ) pleaded guilty for his role in the company's dishonest dealings relating to a patent deal involving the popular blood-thinning drug Plavix.

Shares of Sun Microsystems Inc (JAVA: News ) tumbled on Monday after media reports said that International Business Machines Corp.'s (IBM: News ) talks to acquire the company collapsed.

A report in the Financial Times said that up to seven investors have expressed an interest in acquiring a stake in General Motors' European division.

Meanwhile, GM announced its collaboration with electric scooter manufacturer Segway Inc. by which the companies are developing a two-wheel, electrically powered, two-seat prototype vehicle. Named Project PUMA, or Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility, the companies were demonstrating the prototype in New York City Tuesday morning.

On the earnings front, Alcoa, the litmus test for the season, has said its first-quarter results would continue to be callously encroached by the global meltdown that has adversely affected pricing and demand for aluminum, alumina and aluminum products.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect the company to report a loss of $0.52 per share on revenues of $4.08 billion for the quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items. In the year-ago period, the company posted earnings of $0.37 per share on revenues of $7.38 billion.

The major markets across the Asia-Pacific region ended lower on Tuesday, mirroring sentiment on Wall Street. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 Index ended down 25.28 points, or 0.28%, at 8,832.

The economic calendar is light again on Tuesday, The consumer credit report from the Federal Reserve is due out this afternoon. Borrowing costs are expected to have fallen by 1.5% in February.

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