Uncertain Markets May Open Higher

LONDON -- The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) and the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC  ) may open slightly higher this morning, according to futures markets as of 7 a.m. EDT.

Although any gains made today are unlikely to be as dramatic as those seen during Friday's rebound surge, there could still be a significant positive sentiment behind trading if CNN's Fear & Greed Index is any indication. The index, which measures the emotions behind the market, is currently at 66, indicating "greed" -- its highest level for some months.

With no major economic data due today, markets are likely to focus on company earnings and any new developments in the eurozone. Companies that are due to report before the bell this morning include The AES Corp and Tyson Foods, while Chesapeake Energy and Boston Properties are among those due to report after markets close tonight.

In Europe, all the main markets are up so far this morning, with the DAX up 0.6%, the CAC up 0.6%, the FTSE MIB up 0.7% and Spain's IBEX up by 3.1%. There were no major developments in the eurozone this morning, although the Netherlands government sold a new batch of three- and seven-month bonds at negative yields, proving that the demand for safe-haven debt is as strong as ever.

Underlying this is the uncertainty over whether the Spanish and Italian governments will formally request a bailout. Both are reluctant but may soon have no choice; Spanish 10-year bond yields remain close to the critical 7% level, at almost 6.8%. Since European Central Bank president Mario Draghi made it clear that assistance would only be granted following a request from the country concerned, it may now only be a matter of time.

In London, the FTSE 100 (INDEX: ^FTSE  ) was up by a more modest 0.2% at 7 a.m. EDT. Top gainers included retailer Marks & Spencer, up 2.5% on takeover rumors; Barclays bank, up 1.9%; and mining giant Rio Tinto, up 1.7% and helped by a positive statement on growth from the People's Bank of China.

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Roland Head owns no shares of any of the companies mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of Chesapeake Energy. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.


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