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Minyanville's Before the Bell: Global Bulls Pushing Stock Futures Up


Asian markets ended on solid ground but European markets are mixed in trading. Global bullish sentiment is pushing up stock futures.


Global bullish sentiment is pushing up stock futures this morning. As of 7:30 AM EST, S&P futures were up 16.4 points at 1,478.00, and Nasdaq futures were up 20.25 points at 1,995.00.

Markets in Asia ended on solid ground this morning after news was released that President George Bush would make comments that suggest changes in housing policy to help subprime borrowers. The Hang Seng ended up 2.13%, Sensex up 1.14%, Taiwan up 2.41%, Shanghai up 0.99%, and the Nikkei added 2.57%.

In Japan, Toyota (TM) unveiled an aggressive global sales target to 10.4 mln vehicles, 11% higher than this year's target. The plan represents a major offensive to unseat General Motors (GM) as the world's number one carmaker. (From WSJ). Shares of the company were also boosted in part by further weakening of the yen. Please read more of the effects of global currencies in Prof. Bloudek's The Duration Carry Trader.

In India, the Sensex Index rose for the sixth consecutive day as news of economic expansion gave another boost to bullish sentiment. India's GDP came in at 9.3% for the for the three months ending June 30. The country's economy is expected to grow 8.5% in the current fiscal year. (From Bloomberg)

In Europe, markets are mixed in trading. The CAC is up 1.34%, DAX is up 0.77%, and the FTSE is up 0.90%.

Topping the headlines in Europe, Euro zone inflation data came in at the European Central Bank's target. Consumer prices for the 13 European countries rose 1.8% as expected. Markets expect the ECB will now refrain from an interest rate increase signaled earlier for Sept 6. (From FT)

French President Nicolas Sarkozy called for further tax cuts and labor-market changes to stimulate the French economy. In addition, Sarkozy renewed his criticism of the ECB to take more action against the strong Euro, suggesting ECB to be more open to debate. (From WSJ)

In other news, McGraw Hill (MHP) replaced its top executive, Kathleen Corbet, amid recent criticism of the ratings agencies. (From WSJ)

Investment banks will cut more than 10% of their staff. The majority of the cuts are expected to be within the areas of structured credit and leveraged finance. (From FT)

Economic data set to be released today is as follows:

  • 8:30: Personal Income: 0.3% cons
  • 8:30: Personal Spending: 0.4% cons
  • 8:30: Core PCE Inflation: 0.2% cons
  • 9:45: Chicago PMI: 53.0
  • 10:00: Factory Orders: 0.9%
  • 10:00: Mich Sentiment-Rev: 84.0

Also significant: all eyes are on Chairman Bernanke as he gives a speech in Jackson Hole at 10 AM EST. At 11 AM EST President Bush will give an announcement on changes in housing policy. The statements is expected to ease the tax code and toughen laws against predatory lending.

Please continue to check back on our News and Views page for continuously updated information you need to know. Good luck and good trading!

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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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