Thursday Pre-market US: Key News & Data

by: Between the Hedges

From Between the Hedges:

Late-Night Headlines

- United Technologies(NYSE:UTX) named Pratt & Whitney head Louis Chenevert president and chief operating officer, putting him in line to replace CEO George David in about two years.
- Brazil’s central bank cut the benchmark lending rate to a 17-month low in a bid to fuel faster growth in Latin America’s biggest economy.
- The US and its European allies will take a gradual approach in the UN Security Council to building pressure on Iran to suspend uranium enrichment, envoys said after the UN’s nuclear agency cleared the way for council action on the issue.

Wall Street Journal:
- Delphi Corp.(OTC:DPHIQ) and General Motors(NYSE:GM) are close to agreeing on the broad points of a potential deal with the UAW union.
- Cia. Vale do Rio Doce, the world’s largest iron-ore producer, may accept an increase in prices at the lower end of analyst forecasts.

- National Football League owners approved a new six-year collective bargaining agreement that keeps a salary cap.

USA Today:
- US military bases were ordered to reduce energy consumption by 2% a year by using sources such as wind and solar energy because of rising fuel costs.

China Daily:
- China, the world’s largest buyer of cotton, is expected to import 1.5 million tons of cotton this year, down from 2.57 million a year earlier, as domestic output rises.

- Afghanistan’s government sent soldiers into the southern province of Helmand to begin destroying opium poppy fields in the world’s biggest opium producing country.

- North Korea offered to exchange information with the US in an attempt to apprehend criminals involved in manufacturing counterfeit US currency.

Late Buy/Sell Recommendations
Goldman Sachs:
- Reiterated Outperform on (NYSE:USB), (NYSE:XOM) and (NASDAQ:GOOG).
- Reiterated Underperform on (NASDAQ:INFA).

Night Trading
Asian Indices are unch. to +.75% on average.
S&P 500 indicated +.16%.
NASDAQ 100 indicated +.15%.

Morning Preview
US AM Market Call
NASDAQ 100 Pre-Market Indicator/Heat Map
Pre-market Commentary
Before the Bell CNBC Video(bottom right)
Global Commentary
Asian Indices
European Indices
Top 20 Business Stories
In Play
Bond Ticker
Daily Stock Events
Macro Calls
Rasmussen Consumer/Investor Daily Indices
CNBC Guest Schedule

Earnings of Note
Company/EPS Estimate
- (NYSE:ARO)/.74
- (BBI)/.15
- (CLE)/.68
- (NASDAQ:DWA)/.42
- (FMT)/1.20
- (HANS)/.62
- (LFB)/.08
- (MCDTA)/.06
- (NYSE:NSM)/.32
- (PA)/.18
- (NYSE:ZQK)/.18
- (NYSE:RCI)/.53
- (SGY)/1.27
- (NYSE:USM)/.39

Upcoming Splits
- None of note

Economic Releases
8:30 am EST
- The Trade Deficit for January is estimated to widen to -$66.5 billion versus -$65.7 billion in December.
- Initial Jobless Claims for last week are estimated to fall to 290K versus 294K the prior week.
- Continuing Claims are estimated to rise to 2492K versus 2486K prior.

BOTTOM LINE: Asian indices are higher, boosted by technology shares in the region. I expect US equities to open mixed and to rise modestly into the afternoon.