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Before The Bell: Honda Sees Bright Road; General Mills Beats; Futures Mixed.


Honda expects record sales despite concerns of global growth. General Mills beats analyst expectations.

Morning Perspective: Honda Sees Bright Road

FT reports Honda (HMC), Japan's second-largest carmaker, said it expects record sales this year despite concerns of a slowdown in global growth. The company, which sells half of its cars in North America, expects sales to grow 3% to 1.59 mln cars due in part to stronger demand for compact cars and fuel-efficient vehicles. In China, Honda expects sales to jump 17% in 2008 to a record 490,000 cars. For context, read Professor Prieur du Plessis' Reviewing Last Week's Economy. Also read Mr. Practical's Current Global Economy Like Nothing Before.

From the Bull Pen: A safer play for bulls may rest in the Japanese Yen ETF (FXY), near-term sell-stops below $86.50.

From the Bear Cave: Despite Honda's optimism, those still bearish may play the downside, near-term buy-stops above $34. Toyota (TM) may be another option; buy-stops above $110.

General Mills Beats

General Mills' (GIS) second quarter profits jumped 1.3% on higher prices and increased demand. The company reported $1.18 EPS for the quarter beating analyst estimate by $0.05. Revenues came in at $3.70 bln versus expectations of $3.62 bln. Profit margins came in at 18.6% compared with 19.4%; however, the company raised its full-year outlook for net sales growth and affirmed its earnings forecast. Read Professor Ryan Krueger's The Other Side Of A Pair Of Uncomfortable Trades.

From the Bull Pen: Those Those bullish GIS may set sell-stops below $58 (50- and 200-day moving averages). Kraft (KFT) may be another alternative; sell-stops below $32.00

From the Bear Cave: Professor Krueger recently mentioned that the Consumer Staples ETF (XLP) was beginning to look vulnerable. Bears may attempt a quick downside play with buy-stops above $29.

Click on Minyanville's Stocks To Watch for more company-specific ideas.

Quick Check Around the World

Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +1.11%, Nikkei -1.17%, Sensex +0.06%, Taiwan +2.65% and Shanghai +2.18%.

A quick look towards Europe finds the CAC -0.49%, DAX -0.24%, FTSE -0.33%, ATX -0.24%, Swiss Mkt. -0.80% and Stockholm -0.49%.

A Look At Commodities

Crude oil is higher this morning +0.27 to 90.35. Gold is down -3.4 to 804.00. Silver is up +0.015 to 14.18, and copper is up +3.10 to 291.55.

As of 8:30 AM ET, S&P futures are down by -1.50 points and Nasdaq futures are higher by 3.25 points.

On the Radar


10:30 Crude inventories: -722k

Click here for the full trading radar.

Happy Hump Day! Good luck!
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