Stocks that are expected to trade actively in U.S. markets on Thursday include: The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR), Whole Foods Market, Inc. (NASDAQ:WFM), Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN) and QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM).
U.S.: DJIA 15746.88 (0.82%), S&P 500 1,770.49 (0.43%), NASDAQ 3,931.95 (-0.20%).
Europe: FTSE 6,726.16 (-0.23%), DAX 9,040.06 (-0.01%), CAC 40 4,284.04 (-0.07%).
Asia Pacific: NIKKEI 14228.44 (-0.76%), SHANGHAI 2,129.40 (-0.48%), HSI 22881.03(-0.68%), ASX 200 5,422.04 (-0.22%), KOSPI 2004.04 (-0.48%).
Commodities: Oil 94.65 (-0.16%), NAT GAS 3.522 (0.69%), Gold 1,315.60 (-0.17%), Silver 21.775 (0.03%), Wheat 654.50 (0.19%), Corn 420.50 (-0.18%).
Currency: EUR/USD 1.3517 (0.05%), GBP/USD 1.6072 (-0.04%), USD/JPY 98.67 (0.02%).
10 year Treasury bond: 2.643 (-0.004)
Market & Economic Update
U.S. market may open lower: The U.S. stock index futures declined on Thursday, as investors await the data for economic growth indicating how the Federal Reserve will maintain its stimulus. At 10:07 a.m. in London, futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell 0.1% to 1,763.8. Yesterday, the Dow climbed to a record high and the S&P 500 closed at a week high.
European market slightly down: Shares on the European exchange were slightly down on Thursday, as investors remain cautious prior to the policy update by European Central Bank, which is expected to cool off monetary lending. At 0815 GMT, FTSEurofirst 300 was down 0.95% at 1,295.63, which is still hovering around its five-year high.
Asian markets down: On Thursday, shares on the Japanese Nikkei fell 0.8% to 14,228.44 points. Investors were risk-averse as they waited for U.S. job data, but the small cap stocks gained after the announcement of their inclusion in the new index. Shares on the Hang Seng Index lost 0.7% to 22,881.0 points, it’s lowest close since late October as media reports came signaling possible reforms in the communist party policy meeting next week, which deepened the losses for Chinese financials.
Stocks To Watch
The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS)
On Thursday, Walt Disney is expected to announce its fourth-quarter earnings of 76 cents a share, according to a consensus survey by FactSet. Analysts at Wunderlich Securities have raised the price target for Walt Disney from $65 to $77, in a report issued earlier this week.
Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR)
Twitter will debut on the New York Exchange (NYSE) on Thursday, to raise $2 billion with its initial public offering (IPO) of 70 million shares at $26 each. Twitter has priced the IPO above the range of $23 to $25, given by the company earlier this week. It has also given the underwriters a 30 day option to buy up to 10.5 million in additional shares.
Whole Foods Market, Inc. (NASDAQ:WFM)
On Wednesday, after the closure of the market, Whole Foods announced a rise in earnings of 7% to $121 million or 32 cents a share for the fourth quarter of the 2013 fiscal year. For the quarter, revenue came in at $2.98 billion, which was below the analyst’s estimate of $3.04 billion. The shares were down 8% in after-hours trading.
Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN)
Groupon is expected to announce its third quarter earnings of a penny a share. Earlier, analysts at Sterne Agee restated the Buy rating for Groupon: “We think GRPN continues to benefit from two powerful secular eCommerce trends -- local and mobile,” Arvind Bhatia at Sterne Agee said in a report.
QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM)
On Wednesday, Qualcomm Inc announced that for the fourth quarter earnings jumped to 86 cents a share from 73 cents a share last year. On an adjusted basis, the earnings of $1.05 a share were below the consensus estimate of $1.09 a share. The share in the after hours of trading fell over 4%.