In the Headlines
Stock futures pointed to the upside Tuesday, attempting a rebound after Monday's sharp downward reversal. U.S. trade followed Europe higher this morning. Better-than-expected business sentiment data from Germany gave most major bourses a lift. Lower yields and strong demand in a Spanish auction of short-term debt also boosted trader sentiment.
The euro was moving higher against the U.S. dollar early Tuesday.
Asian stocks finished Tuesday with mixed results, although indices closing to the downside saw more muted losses than during Monday's session.
A Commerce Department report on housing starts and building permits for November is due at 8:30 a.m. EST. Economists expect 630,000 housing starts, up from October's 628,000. Permits are seen declining to 633,000 from 644,000 previously.
The Treasury Department holds an auction of 5-year notes at 1 p.m. EST. It's the second of three auctions this week, with 7-year notes on the docket for Wednesday.
Gold advanced $9.80 to $1,606.50 per ounce in early trade. It closed below the $1600 level in Monday's session. Crude oil was also trading higher on the Nymex, gaining $1.08 per barrel to $94.96.
General Mills (GIS) said it second-quarter earnings came in below views, at $0.76 per share vs. expectations of $0.79. Revenue was also on the light side, coming in at $4.62 billion, below estimates of $4.68 billion. Shares fell $1.09, 2.8%, to $38.50 in early trade.
Truck maker Navistar (NAV) trounced earnings views, reporting fourth-quarter income of $3.37 per share vs. views of $3.08. However, revenue rolled in below expectations, at $4.32 billion. Wall Street had been eyeing $4.44 billion in sales. Navistar shares are down nearly 37% year-to-date. Navistar soared $4.18, 11.4%, to $40.72 in the premarket.
ConAgra Foods (CAG), maker of Hunt's ketchup, Orville Redenbacher popcorn, Chef Boyardee products and other brands reported second-quarter earnings per share of $0.47 on revenue of $3.4 billion, beating Wall Street's call for $0.42 on $3.3 billion.
After the bell, Oracle's (ORCL) second-quarter report will almost certainly be an attention-grabber. The enterprise software maker is seen earning $0.57 a share, with revenue of $9.23 billion. Oracle shares have struggled to gain traction, along with the general market, after retreating from May's 52-week high of $36.50.
Nike (NKE) also runs in with its second-quarter results after the bell. Analysts see earnings of $0.97 a share on revenue of $5.63 billion. Revenue growth has trended higher in the past couple of quarters, while shares ran to an all-time high of $98.25 earlier this month.
DJIA component AT&T (T), declined $0.24 to $28.50. On Monday, the telecom said it would drop its bid for T-Mobile, and would pay a $4 billion breakup fee. Traders and industry analysts had soured on the deal weeks ago, potentially limiting today's negative fallout.
Rival telecom Sprint Nextel (S) was an early beneficiary of the news, though. Shares gained $0.14, or 6.48%, to $2.30 early Tuesday.
Bank of America (BAC) shares rebounded above the $5 level in the premarket, after closing at $4.99 on Monday. Investors continue to fret about the bank's need to recapitalize. In early trade Tuesday, shares were up $0.07, 1.5%, to $5.06.
A big decliner ahead of the bell was Red Hat (RHT), shedding $3.55, 7.71%, to $42.50. Late Monday, the open-source software maker beat third-quarter earnings views, but issued fourth-quarter revenue guidance below Wall Street's expectations.
William Blair initiated coverage on two recent initial public offerings. Zeltiq Aesthetics (ZLTQ) received a rating of "Outperform." Zeltiq, which makes a product that sounds like it would be wildly popular -- a zapper for difficult-to-reduce fat bulges -- went public at $13 in October, but have shed some weight since then, closing at $11.95 on Monday.
HomeAway (AWAY), which specializes in online vacation rentals, received a designation of "Market Perform" from Blair. The stock made its debut in June at $27, and closed Monday at $20.88. Shares were under severe selling pressure in the session, dropping 10.4% in heavy volume, as anything connected with social media fell out of favor.