Asian stocks are up on Monday while European stocks and U.S. futures are flat. China central bankers signal flexibility on its currency peg to the U.S. dollar.
Good morning, I’m Kristin Bianco, with the “Week Ahead Market Report” for March 8, 2010.
In overseas equity markets this morning, major Asian markets shot higher on strength in resource stocks. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index rose 2.1 percent today while China’s Shanghai Shenzen index advanced 0.8 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was higher by 2.0 percent.
European equity markets were marginally higher on Monday morning. The German DAX index moved up by 0.1 percent. Britain’s Footsie 100 index also edged up 0.1 percent.
U.S. S&P index futures are flat in Monday’s pre-market action.
Oil futures were trading around $82 a barrel this morning, and gold futures were little changed.
On the economic front, economists will be keying in on the U.S. Department of Labor’s initial claims report on Thursday. Economists are expecting initial claims to have edged lower from 469,000 to 460,000 for the week of February 27.
Retail sales for February will be released on Friday. Economists are expecting sales to drop 0.2 percent after a 0.5 percent increase for January.
China central bank chief Zhou Xiochuan indicated it will eventually change its controversial currency exchange policy linked to the U.S. dollar. One-year dollar-yuan forward contracts were lower. The over-the-counter spot rate was relatively unchanged.
German and French officials are planning to launch a new institution modeled on the IMF. The new European monetary fund would monitor national budgets in the euro-zone and act in the event of a future sovereign debt crisis.
Earnings season is winding down this week with only about 230 companies reporting, including 5 S&P 500 members.
The Kroger Company (NYSE:KR) will report before the market opens on Tuesday with earnings expectations of 34 cents per share.
Jo-Ann Stores (JAS) is expected to report after the market closes on Wednesday with consensus estimates of $1.33 per share.
Also on Wednesday during market hours, Navistar International (NYSE:NAV) is expected to report earnings per share of 85 cents per share.
On Thursday, Aeropostale (NYSE:ARO) will report after the market closes. Analysts are expecting 95 cents per share in profits.
Natural gas distributor Piedmont Natural Gas (NYSE:PNY) will report on Friday with expectations of $1.11 per share.
Join us on Friday for the “Weekly Market Wrap” and have a wonderful week.
For MarketNewsVideo.com, I'm Kristin Bianco and this is the “Week Ahead Market Report” for March 8, 2010.
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