Uncertain Start for Dow and S&P

LONDON -- Stock index futures at 7 a.m. EST suggest that the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) may lose a trifling 0.06% when markets open this morning, while the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC  ) may fall 0.07%.

Investors' attention is likely to be divided between this morning's domestic economic data and last night's Greek debt deal, which means that the beleaguered country will see the interest rates on its bailout loans cut and their maturities extended from 15 to 30 years, while a portion of its debt will be bought back by the European Central Bank. The ECB will also return 11 billion euros of profits it has received from its Greek debt holdings. The deal paves the way for Greece to receive a much-needed 34 billion euro aid payment next month and has been broadly welcomed, but concerns remain that Greece will still struggle to generate growth and that further debt-restructuring will eventually be required.

On the domestic front, October's durable-goods orders will be released at 8:30 a.m. EST. Consensus forecasts suggest a fall of 0.4%, following September's 9.9% increase. At 9 a.m. EST, the Case-Shiller home price index is expected to show a 3% increase for September after gaining 2% in August. There will be more house price data at 10 a.m. EST when September's FHFA home price index is released, with a 0.4% increase expected. Also at 10 a.m. EST, November's Consumer Confidence Index is expected to remain almost unchanged at 73, up from 72.2 in October.

Corporate earnings
Companies due to report today include Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, which has risen by 18% over the last two months, despite hedge fund manager David Einhorn's widely publicized negative stance on the stock. PVH, which owns Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger, and Analog Devices are due to update investors after markets close tonight. Facebook stock could also be actively traded today after it gained 8% in trading yesterday following multiple broker upgrades, while Dollar General may also be popular after Standard & Poor's confirmed that the retailer would replace Cooper Industries in the S&P 500 index.

European markets
In Europe, markets gave a lukewarm welcome to the news of last night's Greek deal. Any deal was expected to be a compromise, and last night's agreement is widely seen as just one more step along the road -- not a final solution. At 7:20 a.m. EST, the DAX was up 0.6%, the CAC 40 was up 0.4%, the FTSE MIB was up 0.2%, and the IBEX 35 was up 0.3%. In London, the FTSE 100 (INDEX: ^FTSE  ) was up 0.4%, with Royal Bank of Scotland topping the leaderboard, up nearly 3% after UBS upgraded the stock to a buy.

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Roland Head does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. The Motley Fool owns shares of Facebook. The Fool owns shares of and has created a synthetic short position on Green Mountain Coffee Roasters. The Fool has bought calls on Facebook. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters and Facebook. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a bear put spread position in Green Mountain Coffee Roasters. 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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