Futures flat ahead of jobless claims, earnings

Large financials are set to report quarterly results just as Boeing Dreamliner gets grounded. Several economic releases are on tap.

By Benzinga Jan 17, 2013 9:46AM

zurbar age fotostockU.S. equity futures were flat in early Thursday trade ahead of many economic reports, including initial jobless claims, and ahead of many earnings. The earnings data will truly set the tone before the open with many big banks set to report fourth quarter results following the positive reports from J.P. Morgan Chase (JPM) and Goldman Sachs (GS).

In other news, the FAA has grounded all Boeing (BA) 787 Dreamliners, following moves from regulators in Japan and alongside those in Europe, until the battery issue is resolved.


The latest tranche of the Greek bailout, some 3.25 billion euros, was finally disbursed to Greece.


Analysts at Societe Generale have raised their forecasts fro Chinese growth in 2012 and 2013. Ahead of the fourth quarter GDP report, Soc Gen raised its forecast for fourth quarter GDP to 7.9% annualized growth vs. 7.8% before and also raised its full-year 2013 forecast to 7.8% from 7.4% annualized growth.

  • S&P 500 futures were flat at 1,465.50.
  • The EUR/USD was higher at 1.3362.
  • Spanish 10-year government bond yields fell to 5.02% following a strong debt auction.
  • Italian 10-year government bond yields fell to 4.14%.
  • Gold futures fell 0.03% to $1,682.20 per ounce.
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Asian markets
Asian shares were mixed overnight with Australian shares leading and Chinese shares lagging ahead of the GDP report late Thursday. The Japanese Nikkei Index rose 0.09% and the Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.06% while the Hang Seng Index declined 0.07%. Also, the Korean Kospi fell 0.16% and Australian shares rose 0.38%.

European markets
European shares were mixed overnight as peripheral shares led on the back of the strong debt auction in Spain and weakness was seen in the core. The Spanish Ibex Index rose 0.35% and the Italian MIB Index rose 0.4%. Meanwhile, the German DAX fell 0.34% and the French CAC rose 0.41% while U.K. shares fell 0.1%.

Commodities were mixed overnight with oil leading and natural gas futures lagging. WTI crude futures rose 0.17% to $94.40 per barrel and Brent crude futures rose 0.33% to $110.61 per barrel as Natural Gas futures declined 0.82% to $3.41 per million BTU. Copper futures rose 0.26% to $361.60 per pound despite the weakness seen in China. Gold was lower and silver futures fell 0.16% to $31.49 per ounce.

Currency markets were back to their old ways with the euro gaining and the yen declining, the combination sending the EUR/JPY cross higher by a massive 1.7% to 119.45. The EUR/USD was 0.55% higher at 1.3362 and the dollar rose against the yen by 1.12% to 89.37. Overall, the Dollar Index fell 0.18% as the strength against the yen was off-set against weakness euro, the pound and the Swiss franc. In addition, the EUR/CHF gained 0.6% to 1.2446, the highest since March 2011, and the Aussie dollar weakened against the greenback following weak employment data in Australia.

Premarket Movers
Stocks moving in the premarket included:
  • Boeing (BA) shares fell 3.15% premarket as the 787 Dreamliner has been grounded by regulators globally.
  • Bank of America (BAC) shares rose 2.46% premarket ahead of its earnings report this morning.
  • Intel (INTC) shares rose 0.54% premarket ahead of its earnings report and also after disclosing a new agreement with Facebook (FB) to collaborate on a new data center.
  • Goldman Sachs (GS) shares fell 0.12% premarket after rising over 4% Wednesday on a strong earnings release.
Notable companies expected to report earnings Thursday include:
  • Bank of America (BAC) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $0.02 vs. $0.15 a year ago.
  • Citigroup (C) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $0.96 vs. $0.31 a year ago.
  • UnitedHealth Group (UNH) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $1.19 vs. $1.17 a year ago.
  • Intel (INTC) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $0.45 vs. $0.64 a year ago.
  • Blackrock (BLK) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $3.69 vs. $3.06 a year ago.
The economics calendar Thursday is rather full, beginning with housing starts and jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. ET. Later, the Philly Fed survey is due out and the EIA natural gas report is set to be released. Lastly, Dennis Lockhart of the Atlanta Fed is set to speak.

Overnight, the big data comes from China in its fourth quarter GDP release. The National Bureau of Statistics is expected to report that the economy grew at an annual rate of 7.8% in the fourth quarter vs. a 7.4% rate in the third quarter. Also, China is set to release fixed asset investment data, retail sales data and industrial production data. Also, Spanish and Italian industrial new orders data are expected.

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Jan 17, 2013 11:13AM

Futures down, futures flat...The World was up, except for maybe China...No reason that we shouldn't be on an up note today...?


I'm not going to let Apple or Boeing or the Banks, take the wind out of my sails today..Period

Jan 17, 2013 11:08AM

How do people find this site ??  NONE of them are investors......Or damn few; Doubt that very many even have 401Ks....They don't work..??


They don't talk about the Companies fundamentals, they don't even know the Stock's symbol...

They come on the articles, and say the French fries or wings...Stink..


Or they bitch about Gun Control or Obama, Biden, the NRA...Bush,Timmy and others.

They don't discuss anything important on the Financial Articles, about the company or anything pertinent to the article....THEY JUST BITCH and WHINE and MOAN, send in the Cheese Lady.


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