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Pre-Market: LG Profits Fall By Over 50%; Sony Plans to Increase Image Sensor Production


Plus: Chinese police arrest five people in investigation of Shanghai-based meat supplier to KFC and McDonald's.

Stock futures pointed toward a higher open on Wednesday. Before the opening bell, Dow Jones (INDEXDJX:.DJI) futures rose 0.06% to 17,043. Futures on the S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) were up 0.12% to 1,977.20. Nasdaq (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) futures moved higher, rising 0.34% to 3,963.75.  


Company earnings are coming in hot and heavy this morning, with investors still mulling over results from the likes of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) -- the former beating expectations, the latter missing them -- delivered after yesterday's closing bell. Overnight, Korea's LG Display Co. (NYSE:LPL) reported that its profit fell by 55.4% -- the second consecutive drop of such magnitude in three quarters. LG, which is the world's largest manufacturer of LCD screens, believed demand for panels would pick-up across the quarter, but ultimately experienced subdued demand on top of a stronger South Korean won. In other earnings news, GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) CEO Andrew Witty said its unlikely to deliver sales growth this year as the company reported a 4% drop in revenue and a 12% drop in EPS this past quarter year-on-year; PepsiCo (NYSE:PEP) delivered a second quarter EPS of $1.32 on revenue of $16.89 billion, each ahead of estimates; Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) saw its year-on-year revenue crash by 99% and its EPS miss by 0.18%. Among the movers in pre-market trading, GlaxoSmithKline fell 2.65%, PepsiCo rose 2.15%, Apple fell 0.44%, and Microsoft rose 2.23%.

Sony (NYSE:SNE) says it will spend $345 million to increase production of image sensors destined for smartphones and tablets by 13%, or 68,000 wafers a month. The Tokyo-based conglomerate leads the market in image sensor production, beating out Santa Clara, California-based OmniVision Technologies (NASDAQ:OVTI) for the top spot. Sony currently supplies the image sensor for the Apple iPhone's main camera. While shares of Sony remained unchanged ahead of the opening bell, OmniVision was trading higher by 1.46%.

Professional social media network LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) has announced it will acquire business audience marketer Bizo for approximately $175 million. LinkedIn says it plans to integrate Bizo's ad platform into its own content marketing tool. This will allow LinkedIn to launch and manage "multi-channel marketing" programs targeted at business prospects. The news comes days after another acquisition in the social media space: Twitter's (NYSE:TWTR) purchase of e-commerce company CardSpring.

An investigation by the New York Federal Reserve has found Deutsche Bank's (NYSE:DB) US operations are currently plagued by financial reporting, auditing, and technology problems. The New York Fed claims that Deutsche Bank has been aware of these problems for years, but has taken no steps to fix them, and has said the firms reporting structure is in need of "wide-ranging remedial action". Deutsche Bank rose 2.24% in pre-market trading.


A light economic calendar today will allow investors to stay focused on earnings. MBA mortgage purchases moved higher by 0.3% in the week ending July 18, failing to erase the 0.8% decline suffered the week before. The refinancing index rose 4%. At 10:30 a.m., the Energy Information Association will deliver its weekly update of the United States' petroleum inventories.

Global Markets

Asian stocks traded higher overnight on US earnings and an increase in home sales. In China, police arrested five people in an investigation of Shanghai Husi Food Co., which allegedly supplied expired meat to McDonald's (NYSE:MCD), Yum Brands (NYSE:YUM)-owned KFC, Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX), Burger King (NYSE:BKW), and Pizza Hut. Indonesia's newly elected president Joko Widodo has set a 7% growth target for his country, the likes of which have not been seen since before the Asian financial crisis in the 1990s. In Europe, stocks rose for a second day, while the Euro remained near its lowest levels since last November.

Twitter: @brokawbrokaw
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