From Between the Hedges:
- Hyundai Heavy Industries, the world’s largest shipbuilder, got a 15% discount on steel plates from Japanese steelmakers including Nippon Steel Corp.
- Japanese stocks rose, with the Topix index headed for its best level in more than 14 years. Exporters such as Matsushita Electric Industrial and Honda Motor paced gains after US Fed officials said inflation in the world’s biggest economy is under control and crude oil prices dropped, prompting a rally in US shares.
- The US dollar declined for a third day against the yen on speculation the Fed is getting close to ending a 21-month policy of raising interest rates.
- The US economy will expand this year at about the same pace as 2005 and inflation will stay in check, while employers may add fewer jobs, said Thomas Hoenig, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
Xinhua News Agency:
- Some 50,000 US companies have invested $50 billion in China since the two nations normalized ties in 1979.
South China Morning Post:
- Las Vegas Sands(LVS) is considering a Hong Kong real estate investment trust listing for the shopping mall of its Macau casino.
- LG Electronics of South Korea cut prices of plasma and liquid-crystal display televisions to spur demand ahead of soccer’s World Cup.
Late Buy/Sell Recommendations
- None of note
Asian Indices are +.25% to +.50% on average.
S&P 500 indicated unch.
NASDAQ 100 indicated +.09%.
US AM Market Call
NASDAQ 100 Pre-Market Indicator/Heat Map
Before the Bell CNBC Video(bottom right)
Top 20 Business Stories
Daily Stock Events
Rasmussen Consumer/Investor Daily Indices
CNBC Guest Schedule
- None of note
10:00 am EST
- ISM Non-Manufacturing for March is estimated to fall to 59.0 versus a reading of 60.1 in February,
10:30 am EST
- Bloomberg consensus estimates call for a weekly crude build of 1,000,000 barrels. Gasoline inventories are estimated to fall 1,900,000 barrels, and distillate supplies are expected to decrease by 1,400,000 barrels. Refinery utilization is expected to rise .30%.
BOTTOM LINE: Asian indices are higher, boosted by exporting stocks in the region after US Fed members made more dovish comments. I expect US equities to open modestly lower and to trade higher into the afternoon, finishing mixed.