* US: Dow Futures: 13552.00 (0.40%), S&P 500 Futures: 1462.00 (0.43%), NASDAQ Futures: 2835.25 (0.49%)
* Europe: CAC: 3449.47 (1.48%), DAX: 7386.50 (1.10%), FTSE: 5868.68 (0.70%).
* Asia-Pacific: Australia: 4494.40 (0.94%) China: 2086.17 (0.00%), Hong Kong: 21012.38 (0.50%), India: 5746.95 (-0.70%), Japan: 8863.30 (0.44%).
* Metals: Gold: 1792.90 (-0.20%), Silver: 34.98 (-0.36%), Copper: 3.78 (-0.13%)
* Energy: Crude Oil: 90.52 (-1.30%), Natural Gas: 3.40 (-0.15%)
* Commodities: Corn: 7.54 (-0.13%), Soya Bean: 15.57 (1.24%), Wheat: 8.68 (-0.20%)
* Currency: EUR/USD: 1.3018 (0.01%), GBP/USD: 1.6204 (0.08%), USD/JPY: 78.8400 (0.46%)
* 10 year US Treasury: 1.722% (0.050)
Financial and Economic News Update
U.S. stock-index futures trading higher: U.S. stock-index futures are pointing to a higher open on Friday after unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent in September, dropping below the 8 percent mark for the first time in nearly four years. Employers added 114,000 jobs last month, the Labor Department said today. Economists were expecting non-farm payrolls to rise by 113,000 in September. The Dow Jones industrial average, the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ were all trading close to half a percent higher.
European markets in the green: European markets are trading higher on Friday after the European Central Bank said it was ready to buy bonds of troubled euro zone countries. The German DAX (INDEXDB:DAX) was up 1.1 percent at 7386.50, the FTSE 100 (INDEXFTSE:UKX) gained 0.7 percent to 5868.68 and the CAC 40 (INDEXEURO:PX1) surged 1.5 percent to 3449.47. The euro zone blue-chip ESTX 50 PR.EUR (INDEXSTOXX:SX5E) (Euro Stoxx 50) was up 1.4 percent.
Asian markets end mostly higher: Asian markets closed higher on Friday with the HANG SENG INDEX (INDEXHANGSENG:HIS) adding 0.5 percent to 21,012.4 points, bringing its weekly gain to 0.8 percent… Japan’s NIKKEI 225 (INDEXNIKKEI:NI225) edged up 0.4 percent to 8,863.30 points. The S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) index rose 42 points to 4,494.4, its highest close since Aug 1, 2011. The benchmark Indian 30-share BSE SENSITIVE (INDEXBOM:SENSEX) index fell 0.7 percent. The SSE Composite Index (SHA:000001) (Shanghai Composite Index) was closed for a public holiday.
Company News Update
* Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) Chief Executive James Gorman told The Financial Times that more job cuts, and lower pay and bonuses are in the offing as the bank grapples with profit pressures.
* J.P. Morgan slashed its fiscal 2013 revenue target for Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s Payments unit to $582 million from its earlier estimate of $797 million.
* Spirits maker Constellation Brands, Inc. (NYSE:STZ) reported fiscal second-quarter profit of 71 cents per share that easily beat the average analysts’ estimate of 54 cents per share. Revenue for the period was somewhat short of consensus. The company provided full year outlook that was above current projections.
* Specialty retailer The Wet Seal, Inc. (NASDAQ:WTSLA) has reached an agreement with third-largest shareholder Clinton Group, with four of its directors resigning and being replaced by four Clinton Group’s nominees. The activist investor had been trying for months to take control of the struggling retailer’s board.
* Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE:GCI) has threatened to withdraw broadcasting on Dish Network Corp. (NASDAQ:DISH) unless it removes a controversial ad-zapping feature on its new digital video recorders.
* Leon Black’s Apollo Global Management LLC (NYSE:APO) is proposing a merger of its Core Media Group and Dutch-based TV production house Endemol, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
* Curtiss-Wright Corp. (NYSE:CW) lowered its full-year adjusted earnings estimate to between $2.05 and $2.15 a share, from its earlier forecast of $2.50 to $2.60 a share. Analysts were expecting the company to earn $2.53 a share
* Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE) (TYO:6758) has stopped sales of its Xperia tablet computers that went on sale in the U.S. on September 7 because of a manufacturing defect that can make the devices subject to water damage.
* JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM)’s head of corporate and regulatory affairs Barry Zubrow is expected to leave his current job, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.
* The U.S. Justice Department is investigating Swiss bank Credit Suisse Group AG (ADR) (NYSE:CS) over mortgage backed securities packaged and sold during the U.S. housing boom, Reuters reported.
* Datalink Corporation (NASDAQ:DTLK) revised lower its forecast for the third quarter, and said that it now expects to earn 14 cents to 15 cents per share, on revenue of between $105 million and $106 million. The data-center services company had earlier forecast earnings of between 20 cents and 25 cents per share, on revenue of between $117 million and $122 million.
* Oilfield-services company Baker Hughes Incorporated (NYSE:BHI) said the international drilling rig count fell 0.6 percent to 1254 in September from 1261 in August.
* Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) is down 1.1 percent in early morning trade after it was downgraded to “neutral” from “buy” by analysts at Sterne Agee.
* Goldman Sachs has upgraded payroll service provider Automatic Data Processing (NASDAQ:ADP) to “buy” from “neutral.”
* Owens-Illinois, Inc. (NYSE:OI) has been upgraded to “buy” from “neutral” by analysts at Goldman Sachs.
* Former British Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling said that the proposed merger between EADS NV (EPA:EAD) and BAE Systems plc (LON:BA) is likely to hurt British interests because the UK government would have no equity stake in the merged entity, according to a report in The Financial Times.
* Mining stocks were the stand-out performers in London with Kazakhmys plc (LON:KAZ) up 5 percent and Vedanta Resources plc (LON:VED) gaining 3.9 percent. Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation (LON:ENRC) jumped 5.7 percent, while Anglo American plc (LON:AAL) picked up 2 percent. Antofagasta plc (LON:ANTO) added 2.2 percent, as Rio Tinto plc (ADR) (NYSE:RIO) (LON:RIO) (ASX:RIO) edged up 2.8 percent. BHP Billiton Limited (ADR) (NYSE:BHP) (ASX:BHP) (LON:BLT) climbed 1.7 percent.
* French drug maker Sanofi SA (ADR) (NYSE:SNY) (EPA:SAN) said trial results showed that its top-selling diabetes drug Lantus was more efficient than other treatments for reaching target glycemic levels.
* Retailer Burberry Group plc (LON:BRBY) gained 1.5 percent after analysts at Morgan Stanley upgraded the stock to “overweight” from “equal weight.”
* Italian auto major Fiat SpA (BIT:F) said it is ready to buy General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)’s European subsidiary if GM’s alliance with Peugeot SA (EPA:UG) dissolves, according to a Reuters report.
* French engineering firm Technip (EPA:TEC) soared 2.5 percent amid news that the company had been awarded a new $2.7 billion contract in Mexico.
* Private-equity firm The Blackstone Group L.P. (NYSE:BX) is planning to sell a west London office park for about 800 million pounds ($1.3 billion), 67 percent more than what it paid for the property 18 months ago, Bloomberg reported.
* British home-improvement retailer Kingfisher plc (LON:KGF) was downgraded to “equal weight” from “overweight” by analysts at Morgan Stanley.
* Samsung Electronics reported a record quarterly profit of 8.1 trillion won ($7.3 billion), nearly double last year’s figure, boosted by strong sales of its flagship Galaxy smartphones.
* Toyota Motor Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:TM) (TYO:7203) slid 1.6 percent in Tokyo after Reuters reported that sales in China fell about 40 percent in September from the year before, amid an anti-Japan backlash in the country over a territorial dispute.
* Australian supermarket operator Woolworths Limited (ASX:WOW) said it will spin off 69 shopping centers into a real estate investment trust, worth around $1.4 billion, to maximize shareholder value.
* Japanese retail giant Seven & i Holdings Co., Ltd. (TYO:3382) slumped to a two-week low after reporting a 14 percent drop in second quarter net profit. The owner of 7-Eleven, the world’s largest convenience store chain, also cut its full year profit and revenue outlook.
* Indian housing finance major Housing Development Finance Corporation (NSE:HDFC) (BOM:500010) ended 5.9 percent lower after private-equity firm Carlyle Group LP (NASDAQ:CG) sold its remaining 3.7 percent stake in the company.
* Analysts at J.P. Morgan Securities raised Chinese telecom equipment vendor ZTE Corporation (SHE:000063) to “overweight” from “underweight.” ZTE shares closed 5.5 percent higher.
* Ryohin Keikaku Co., Ltd. (TYO:7453) rallied 4.3 percent in Tokyo after the Nikkei business daily reported that the Japanese retailer expects to post a better than expected 21 percent increase in fiscal-year pre-tax profit.
* Chinese state-owned miner Zijin Mining Group Co Ltd. (HKG:2899) (SHA:601899) jumped 2.9 percent in Hong Kong trading after Deutsche Bank named it as one of their top picks among firms exposed to precious metals.
* Chinese telecom-equipment maker Huawei Technology Co Ltd (SHE:002502) is planning to list shares in the U.S., the Wall Street Journal reported.
* LG Display Co Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LPL) (KRX:034220) slumped 4.5 percent in Seoul after analysts at Korea Investments downgraded the stock to “hold” from “buy,” saying prices of display panels may start falling in the fourth quarter.
Economic Calendar for Friday, October 05, 2012:
08:30 A.M. ET: Unemployment Rate (September)
08:30 A.M. ET: Non-farm Payrolls (September)
08:30 A.M. ET: Average Hourly Earnings (MoM) (September)
08:30 A.M. ET: Average Hourly Earnings (YoY) (September)
08:30 A.M. ET: Average Weekly Hours (September)
01:00 P.M. ET: Federal Reserve Governor Elizabeth Duke speaks.
03:00 P.M. ET: Consumer Credit Change (August)