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Pre-Market: Microsoft Partners With Chinese Internet Security Company Qihoo 360; UK Industrial Production Rises


The Labor Department will release its JOLTS report later today.

Stock futures pointed toward a lower open on Tuesday. Before the opening bell, Dow Jones (INDEXDJX:.DJI) futures fell 0.14% to 16,922. Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) futures moved lower, falling 0.22% to 3,785.50.  Futures on the S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) were down 0.22% to 1,946.


Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has partnered with Chinese Internet security provider Qihoo 360 (NYSE:QIHU) to produce mobile Internet and artificial intelligence technology. While details of the deal are scarce, the news comes as Microsoft faces numerous setbacks in China. Last month, the central government banned Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system from being used on government computers. More recently, the state media has accused Microsoft, along with companies like Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), of helping the US government spy on China. Shares of Microsoft fell 0.29% ahead of the open. Qihoo rose 0.65%.

European stock exchange Euronext will conduct an initial public offering next month, aiming to raise between $1.36 billion to $1.57 billion, which would value the financial markets operator at as high as $2.37 billion. Euronext merged with the NYSE Group in 2007 to form NYSE Euronext, which was then acquired by Intercontinental Exchange Inc. in 2013. Intercontinental will be offering up to 60.15% of Euronext's capital through the IPO, with a group of institutional investors including BNP Paribas (OTCMKTS:BNPQY), Societe Generale (OTCMKTS:SCGLY), and Banco BPI (OTCMKTS:BBSPY) taking a 33.36% stake in exchange.

Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) is introducing a new technology that will allow it to compete in the $4 billion data center market for the first time. H-P's new cooling technology uses water to cool machines that run complex programs, but does so at a distance that doesn't risk damaging vital (and pricey) computer components if a leak occurs. The development comes as competition from Asian manufacturers grows and customers that traditionally create software like Google and Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) have begun producing their own equipment. Shares of Hewlett-Packard fell 0.36% before the opening bell.

Sony (NYSE:SNE) is planning to launch its $99 set-top box PlayStation TV this fall in North America, pitting it against Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), which unveiled its video- and game-streaming device Fire TV in April, and Apple, whose Apple TV has been the mainstay stand-alone video-streaming device since 2007. Playstation TV will allow users to access TV shows and movies from the PlayStation store, as well as stream Playstation 3 games from PlayStation Now, Sony's cloud-based game-streaming service. Shares of Sony fell 0.18% in pre-market trading.


Today's economic calendar kicked off with the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index, which rose sharply for the second month in a row, up 1.4 points -- its highest level since September 2007. ICSC-Goldman retail store sales suffered a rough week, falling 2.8% and nearly erasing the prior week's 2.9% gain. At 8:55 a.m., chain store sales from Redbook will give a bigger picture of the retail sales situation here in the US. At 10:00 a.m., expect both wholesale trade numbers and the The Labor Department's Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey. The results of the $28 billion 3-year note auction will be reported at 1:00 p.m. The World Bank is set to release its Global Economic Prospects report today, which predicts global economic trends over the next six months.

Global Markets

Asian stocks moved higher overnight after China posted its fastest inflation growth in four months. China's central bank announced it will cut reserve requirements by 0.5% for selected banks in a bid to bolster smaller companies and agriculture. Meanwhile, China's natural gas demand is expected to double by 2019, according to the International Energy Agency. In Europe, stocks continued higher for a third day. Germany's DAX Index (INDEXDB:DAX) moved into record-breaking territory above 10,000. The United Kingdom's industrial production rose for a third month in April as England continues a strong recovery.  In Brussels, representatives from Russia and the Ukraine failed to reach a deal in their ongoing natural gas price dispute, which has drummed up concern of cut-offs of natural gas to the European Union.

Twitter: @brokawbrokaw
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