LONDON -- Stock index futures at 8 a.m. EST indicate that the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) may open 52 points higher this morning after closing up 0.53% yesterday, while the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC ) may open up by 0.4%. CNN's Fear & Greed Index has stabilized at 34, indicating fear, after closing at 32 yesterday.
European stock markets and U.S. stock market futures edged lower this morning until the U.S. nonfarm payrolls report was released, pleasing investors. The addition of 175,000 jobs in May beat analysts' expectations of 169,000. The unemployment rate ticked up 0.1% to 7.6%, but this is simply the result of more people entering the workforce, which is in fact a good sign. In short, the results indicated growth -- but not enough growth to trigger the much-dreaded tapering of quantitative easing by the Federal Reserve, which would mean a reduction in the flow of new money into the markets.
As of 8:40 a.m. EDT, the FTSE 100 is up by 0.41%, while Germany's DAX is up by 0.67% after the German central bank downgraded its growth forecasts for the German economy. However, there was some good news for Europe's largest economy when new data showed that German industrial output beat expectations to record the biggest increase for more than a year in April, rising by 1.8% from March.
Today's employment data is likely to dominate proceedings, and the corporate earnings calendar is almost empty. Company that are expected to report today include Navistar International and Sears Hometown and Outlet Stores. Other stocks that could be actively traded include Quiksilver, which was down by 10% in premarket trading after reporting a surprise loss after markets closed yesterday. Yum! Brands may be in demand when markets open: The firm's stock is 1.2% higher in premarket trading after UBS upgraded its stock. Gap is 2.9% higher in premarket trading after reporting a 7% increase in same-store sales during May, compared with May 2012.
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