The Day Ahead: Lifted by Greece

 | Feb 13, 2012 | 8:30 AM EST  | Comments
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In the Headlines

Despite riots in the streets of Athens, global markets rose Monday on news that Greece's parliament had approved austerity measures.

Wall Street futures pointed higher following Friday's downside reversal. The losses came in lower volume than the prior session, often a signal that institutional investors are not prepared to sell further.

In European trade, financials set the pace Monday as stocks rallied. But gains were moderate, rather than explosive, on major bourses. The euro jumped higher vs. the greenback before Wall Street's open.

Asian stocks also ran higher after the Greek austerity vote early Monday. Japan's Nikkei was given a boost by exporters, which rose on optimism about their European exposure.

Economic Docket

There are no significant econ reports due out today from U.S. government agencies or think tanks.

West Texas Intermediate crude rose $0.93 per barrel, to $99.60 in Nymex trade. The Lundberg Survey, which analyzes fuel prices, said gasoline was up by $0.1157 per gallon in the past three weeks, to $3.5101.

Gold, the traditional safe-haven trade, rose $5.70 to $1,731 per ounce early Monday, even as global equities showed gains.

Industrial metal copper, often viewed as an early indicator for where equity markets may be headed, was up $0.021 per pound in electronic trade, to $3.88.

Earnings

In earnings news Monday, Greece-based drybulk carrier DryShips (DRYS) is expected to report quarterly results. Analysts expect income of $0.07 a share on revenue of $286.12 million. Heading into Monday's session, the stock was up 35% for February but has been severely battered since 2008, and is trading in the single digits.

The stock's recent rise followed news that DryShips' drilling business will be working on 15 wells off the Norwegian coast.

From the tech sector, Web hosting specialist Rackspace (RAX) reports its fourth quarter after the bell. The stock cleared a bullish price consolidation earlier this month and has been rallying in strong weekly volume. It pulled back Friday along with the rest of the market, but remained well above its 10-week moving average.

Wall Street expects earnings of $0.15 a share on revenue of $281.02 million, which would mark year-over-year growth on the top and bottom lines.

Cloud-based software maker LivePerson (LPSN) also reports later today. It's expected to deliver per-share income of $0.09 and revenue of $36.77 million. The stock has been consolidating along its 10-week line ahead of the report.

Market Movers

Premarket movers Monday included Apple (AAPL), climbing $5.19, 1.05%, to $498.61. The company has asked a court in California to prohibit Samsung from selling its Galaxy Nexus smartphone in the U.S. Apple says the product infringes four of its patents.

Fellow S&P 500 component AMD (AMD) jumped $0.18, 0.55%, to $7.23 in early trade. The chipmaker's stock was upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform from Bernstein, which cited good expectations for the second half of 2012.

Another chip sector name, Nvidia (NVDA), also got a premarket boost after an upgrade. FBR Capital raised the stock to Outperform from Market Perform, saying new business from Taiwan-based smartphone maker HTC will drive revenue.

Nvidia rose $0.425 in the premarket, a gain of 2.67%, to $16.32 ahead of the bell.

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