Pre-Market News And Views

Mar. 18, 2011 9:15 AM ETCLF, FCX
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This morning the S&P 500 e-mini futures(ES M1) are soaring higher by 12.50 points to 1281.50 per contract. The rally in the futures comes as the Japanese Nikkei 225 Index rose by 2.72 percent last night. The strength of the Japanese Yen has also pulled back sharply as the G7 said they will intervene to devalue the Japanese Yen. Yesterday, I wrote that the Japanese Yen was very extended on the charts and due for a pullback. Charts are all we need as they seem to be one step ahead of the news.

Crude is pulling back this morning by 0.80 cents to $100.58 a barrel. The United Nations has established a no fly zone over Libya and this has certainly caused oil to pullback sharply. This is also helping stock index futures to rally higher. Should other problems arise in the Middle East and North Africa it would be prudent to expect oil to trade higher again. High oil prices do hurt the economy, therefore, oil must be watched closely everyday.

The important Shanghai Index traded higher by 0.32 percent last night despite an increase in bank reserve requirements by The Peoples bank of China(China central bank). China and most of the Asia countries continue to fight high inflation. Usually, when the Shanghai Index trades higher commodity stocks will increase. Therefore, stocks such as Cliffs Natural Resources Inc.(NYSE:CLF), and Freeport McMoRan Copper and Gold Inc.(NYSE:FCX) could be in play at the open this morning.

Today is quadruple witching options expiration. This is when options contracts will expire for stock index futures, stock index options, single stock futures and stock options. Please remember the volume is usually heavy during the first two hours of the session and then the market will usually quiet down into the close.

Nicholas Santiago

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