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Senate May Try to Raise Debt Limit for One Year; Alcoa, Yum Brands to Kick Off Earnings Season


The Senate Republicans could still filibuster the debt limit increase.

Stocks fared slightly better this morning as politicians might negotiate toward a temporary breakthrough in the stalemate that will keep the government running long enough to avoid a default for now.

The Senate Democrats might put forward a vote today to allow the President to raise the debt limit without policy strings attached such as delaying or defunding the Affordable Care Act. If it works in the Senate, it will go to the House right before the October 17 deadline. Then again, Senate Republicans could filibuster the measure.

For now, this progress has stemmed the sell-off of US indices, and stock futures are higher. Dow (INDEXDJX:.DJI) futures were up 0.11% at 14,867 while futures contracts on the S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) rose 0.16% to 1,670.30. Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) futures also gained 0.19% to 3,211.00.

Again, we aren't going to see the economic data that was originally scheduled for today, so there will be no international trade or job openings and labor turnover (JOLTS).

Earnings season kicks off today. Though it is no longer a Dow component, Alcoa (NYSE:AA) will report its earnings after the bell, as will Yum Brands, Inc (NYSE:YUM). Alcoa is expected to book $0.06 per share in the third quarter, double its profit from a year ago. Revenue, however, is expected to fall 3.4% to $5.63 billion. Yum's EPS is like to have fallen by $0.06 to $0.93 per share as revenue falls 1% to $3.53 billion.

JC Penney (NYSE:JCP) shares are up 7.4% in pre-market trading this morning after the store showed improving monthly same-store sales. In the month ending October 5, sales were up 5.8% from August, but they are still 4% worse than a year ago.

Alcatel-Lucent, SA (NYSE:ALU), the French global networking company, confirmed that it will lay off 10,000 workers, or about 14% of its staff, in order to cut costs.

Twitter: @vincent_trivett
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