Following a spike in overseas markets, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) is set rise at the opening bell today. Stock index futures as of 7:45 a.m. EDT indicate a 27-point bounce at the start of the session this morning after Asian stocks rallied overnight. China and Japan both reported strengthening economic data, and Japan celebrated its selection as the host of the 2020 Summer Olympic Games. Japan's Nikkei index shot up 2.5% to a one-month high.
Closer to home, today's economic-data and earnings calendars are light, so U.S. markets could take their cues from talk of the Federal Reserve's stimulus measures and any developing news regarding Syria.
Meanwhile, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) shares are flirting with the $500 mark again, as the company is set to make a new product announcement. On Tuesday the tech giant is expected to update and expand its iPhone lineup, which was responsible for $80 billion of revenue last year. While that was a 71% improvement over 2011, it's apparently not good enough for some investors, who are worried about the market share the Mac maker has lost to Google's Android devices. Wall Street will be watching for signs of how Apple will continue growing its massive smartphone business in a more competitive market. Shares are up 1.5% in premarket trading.
Verizon (NYSE: VZ ) could see active trading today as it launches a massive new bond offering. The company is seeking $50 billion in debt over the coming weeks in conjunction with its purchase from Vodafone, with underwriters for the sale reportedly including JPMorgan, Barclays, and Morgan Stanley. While the recent rise in long-term interest rates has the deal's costs inching higher, the sheer size of the offering could make it difficult for Verizon to conclude. Shares are down 1% in premarket trading.
Finally, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT ) employees are feeling as unsettled as the company's shareholders. Reuters reports this morning on spreading anxiety among Mr. Softy's workers, who have had to deal with a huge reorganization, the announced retirement of CEO Steve Ballmer, and now the proposed transfer of 32,000 Nokia employees, who will be transitioned into the 100,000-strong Microsoft workforce. In addition to all the challenges Microsoft faces in its quest to reinvent itself, keeping employees on board will be critical. Shares are up 0.3% in premarket trading.
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