Oil, Precious Metals Surge; U.S. Markets To Start Week Down

by: SA Editors


U.S. Futures

S&P 500: -4.20; 1,302.90
NASDAQ: -11.00; 1,574.00
DOW: -32.00; 11,377.00

International Indexes

NIKKEI 225: -0.85%; 15,969.04 (-136.94)
HANG SENG: -1.86%; 17,007.88 (-322.82)
S&P/ASX 200: +0.22%; 5,063.60 (+11.10)
BSE SENSEX 30: +0.40%; 11,511.68 (+45.96)

FTSE 100: +0.13%; 5,911.10 (+7.70)
CAC 40: -0.24%; 5,123.13 (-12.56)
XETRA-DAX: -0.29%; 5,800.39 (-16.63)

Commodity Futures (Reuters/Jefferies CRB)

Oil: +1.03%; $71.87 (+$0.73)
Gold: +1.48%; $630.90 (+$9.20)
Natural Gas: -0.31%; $6.71 (-$0.02)
Silver: +1.79%; $12.245 (+$0.215)

Asian Headlines (via Bloomberg.com)

China, Unable to Slow Economy With Rates, May Require a Currency Solution China may be running out of options to cool its economy short of allowing a stronger currency after the central bank's fourth effort in less than four months to rein in growth.

Asian Stocks Snap Five-Day Rally on China Rate Rise, Oil; Toyota Declines Asian stocks fell, snapping a five-day rally, after China increased interest rates and oil prices rose. Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE:TM) and LG Electronics Inc. led declines.

CapitaLand Trusts to Sell $551 Million of Bonds to Help Fund Acquisition CapitaLand Ltd.'s two property trusts hired HSBC Holdings Plc (HBC) to sell S$866 million ($551 million) of bonds to help fund its purchase of the Raffles City shopping mall and hotel complex in Singapore.

Thai Baht's Biggest Gain in Eight Years Curbs Inflation, Spurs Bond Rally The biggest rally in the Thai baht in eight years is driving down inflation and helping the country's bonds outperform all other investment-grade emerging market debt in Asia.

Microsoft Will Ask Computer Makers to Provide Incentives on Vista Sales Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT), the world's largest software maker, said it will ask personal computer makers to offer incentives to customers buying PCs for upgrades of its Windows Vista operating system.

Human Bird Flu Cases Reach 95 This Year, Same Number as for All of 2005 Bird flu killed a 35-year-old woman in Indonesia, raising the number of cases worldwide this year to 95, the same number reported in the whole of 2005, as health authorities study whether the virus is spreading between humans.

European Headlines (via Bloomberg.com)

Crude Oil Rises for a Second Day After Iran Refuses to Suspend Enrichment Crude oil rose a second day after Iran resisted a United Nations demand to stop enriching uranium, heightening concern oil supplies from the world's fourth-largest producer will be disrupted.

European Commodity Stocks Advance, Led by BP, Total; Rhodia Shares Decline European commodity stocks advanced on speculation higher commodity prices and more mergers and acquisitions will boost earnings in the industry.

BHP Billiton's Striking Chile Copper Mine Workers Reject Higher Wage Offer Striking workers at the world's largest copper mine in Chile rejected a revised pay offer from BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP), extending a two-week strike that has cut production by as much as 60 percent. Copper prices rose.

LogicaCMG Agrees to Buy Computer-Services Company WM-data for $1.7 Billion LogicaCMG Plc, a U.K. computer- services provider, agreed to buy Sweden's WM-data AB for 11.9 billion kronor ($1.67 billion) to gain Nordic customers including Ericsson AB (ERICY), Nokia Oyj (NYSE:NOK) and Saab AB.

Porsche Plans to Raise Volkswagen Stake to 25.1 Percent in 'Near Future' Porsche AG, Volkswagen AG's (OTCPK:VLKAY) largest shareholder, plans "in the near future" to buy an additional 3.8 percent stake, a level allowing Porsche to block major decisions at Europe's largest carmaker should a law limiting voting rights be overturned.

U.S. Headlines (via Bloomberg.com)

Ford to Expand Buyout to All North America Factory Workers as Losses Mount Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F), slashing production and battling a decade-long drop in U.S. market share, is preparing to extend buyout offers to all its factory workers in North America, two people with knowledge of the plan said.

Lowe's Says Net Income Rises 11 Percent on Remodeling, Sales of Appliances Lowe's Cos. (NYSE:LOW), the second-largest U.S. home-improvement retailer, said second-quarter profit rose 11 percent after selling more appliances. The company lowered its full-year earnings forecast.

U.S. Stock-Index Futures Drop; Microsoft, Pfizer, Apple Decline in Europe U.S. stock-index futures fell before reports this week that will probably add to evidence of an economic slowdown after a two-year run of interest-rate increases.

Treasury Bulls Raise Bets U.S. Interest Rates, Inflation May Have Peaked In the Treasury market, where the biggest risks are in the longest-maturing securities, the bulls are increasing their bets that interest rates and inflation won't be climbing anytime soon.

Bernanke, Trichet May Need to Sacrifice More Jobs to Win Inflation Fight When Ben S. Bernanke, Jean-Claude Trichet and other central bankers gather this week amid the comfortable resort surroundings of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, the talk will be of sacrifice.