Stock index futures opened higher on Sunday evening after major indexes closed down on Friday, pressured by a selloff in oil.
Tonight, Dow futures were up 24 points, or about 0.14% in New York and S&P 500 E-mini futures were higher by 0.1%. Nasdaq 100 E-mini futures were up 0.02%. The euro fell 0.12% against the dollar.
Energy will be high on the agenda this week and the outlook for coal looks to be getting even bleaker. Details from President Obama's Clean Power Plan emerged on Sunday, which would bring in tougher limits on carbon emissions and more incentives for renewable energy than previously expected.
"The renewable energy sector should be a clear winner while merchant coal-fired generators could end up the big losers," Paul Patterson, a New York-based utility analyst for Glenrock Associates told Bloomberg in an email.
The weight of the news on coal dependent companies like the railroads could add to the woes of the ground freight industry. Watch out for effects on names like Union Pacific (UNP) and Norfolk Southern (NSC). On the other hand, natural gas could get a boost, as it is among the alternatives being encouraged as a replacement for coal.
Renewable and alternative energy names could also move higher on the news and see even more upside if the regulations survive legal challenges. First Solar (FSLR) and SunEdison (SUNE) stand out in the solar space.
On Friday, a couple of deals were reported by the Wall Street Journal, including United Parcel Service's (UPS) plan to buy shipping-services provider Coyote Logistics for $1.8 billion and Yahoo! (YHOO) agreeing to buy social shopping site Polyvore. Over the weekend, little news on mergers and acquisitions was reported, compared to past weeks, which brought big pharma and healthcare deals.
Looking ahead, earnings are still the focus this week. On Monday, we'll be watching Clorox (CLX), Denny's (DENN) and biotech BioMarin (BMRN). TheStreet's Jim Cramer expects a solid quarter from Clorox and positive news from Denny's with gas prices declining again. But he cautioned that BioMarin might have run up too much. It's up more than 60% year to date.
Tuesday we'll keep an eye on economic data from China, which could be the catalyst we need to give investors a chance to buy some high-quality stocks at a discount, like Trifecta Stocks holding CVS Health (CVS), or Regeneron (REGN), another Cramer fave. Walt Disney (DIS) also reports on Tuesday and Cramer suggests buying the stock on weakness.
On Wednesday, Ralph Lauren (RL), Jack in the Box (JACK), Tesla Motors (TSLA) and Fitbit (FIT) report. Cramer is bullish on Jack in the Box and Fitbit, but had reservations about Ralph Lauren. As for Tesla, Cramer still sees TSLA as a cult stock. But if you love the car, you're free to buy it, he added.
On Thursday, we're watching the report from Allergan (AGN), a stock Cramer owns for his charitable trust Action Alerts PLUS. Cramer said he's concerned about Allergan because of how high expectations are for the company now.
Separately, Molson Coors (TAP) reports and Cramer said he would be a buyer of Molson on weakness.
Finally, on Friday, we will be watching the nonfarm payroll numbers. Cramer said since the Federal Reserve held off raising interest rates, this number isn't likely to be a good one. If stocks sell off on soft numbers, it could give investors another chance to pick up some strong names on a pullback, including WhiteWave Foods (WWAV), another AAP holding.
Separately, Barron's cover story profiled Wells Fargo Advisors' former CEO Danny Ludeman's efforts to help ex-convicts adjust to life after prison. And for a couple of stock stories, Barron's featured Starbucks (SBUX) and Linn Energy (LINE). Starbucks' growth spurt is far from over, Barron's said, adding that the coffee chain's shares could rally 15-20% in 2016. Conversely, Linn Energy, which is down nearly 90% from a year ago, is still no bargain, Barron's said. With its rich payout gone, there is little to support the stock, Barron's noted.
For even more information on earnings reports in the week ahead, you can reference The Street's weekly earnings calendar.