TECHS TO LEAD STOCK RALLY

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By CNNMoney staff

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Strong earnings from the technology sector have investors in high spirits Wednesday, lending U.S. stocks futures a boost in premarket trading.

Dow Jones industrial average (INDU), SP 500 (SPX) and Nasdaq (COMP) futures were all roughly 1% higher ahead of the opening bell. Futures measure current index values against perceived future performance.

Tech leaders Intel (INTC, Fortune 500), IBM (IBM, Fortune 500) and Yahoo (YHOO, Fortune 500) all beat Wall Street estimates when they reported their latest quarterly earnings after the closeTuesday.

In premarket trading, Yahoo shares surged 7%, Intel rose 6.7% and IBM slipped 0.8%.

Also bolstering the tech sector was software developer VMWare (VMW), which rose nearly 13% after reporting strong earnings.

Stocks ended higher Tuesday, after investors turned their attention to a couple stronger-than-expected housing reports and the latest onslaught of corporate earnings.

Companies: Technology investors are eagerly awaiting results from Apple (AAPL, Fortune 500), which reports after Wednesday’s closing bell.

Apple earnings are expected to jump to $5.35 a share, bolstered by sales of the Verizon iPhone and the iPad.

Dow components ATT (T, Fortune 500) and United Technology (UTX, Fortune 500) will both report results before the opening bell, as will railroad giant Union Pacific (UNP, Fortune 500), and healthcare companies Abbott Laboratories (ABT, Fortune 500), Quest Diagnostics (DGC) and St. Jude Medical (STJ, Fortune 500).

Other names to report Wednesday include metal and mining giant Freeport McMoRan (FCX, Fortune 500), chipmaker Qualcomm (QCOM, Fortune 500) and Wells Fargo (WFC, Fortune 500).

Early Wednesday, international power company AES (AES, Fortune 500) announced that will acquire DPL (DPL), the parent company of Dayton Power Light Company, for $4.7 billion.

Wednesday marks the one-year anniversary of the BP oil spill in the Gulf Coast. BP (BP) shares rose 2.9% early in the day, but overall are down about 26% from a year ago.

Economy: The National Association of Realtors will report the latest existing home sales a half hour after the opening bell. Economists are looking for existing home sales to rise by 5 million annualized units, according to Briefing.com.

The Energy Information Administration will report its latest data on U.S. crude oil inventories at 10:30 a.m. ET.

World markets: European stocks rose in midday trading. Britain’s FTSE 100 gained 2%, the DAX in Germany added 2.4% and France’s CAC 40 advanced 2.1%.

Asian markets ended higher. The Shanghai Composite added 0.3%, the Hang Seng advanced 1.6%, and Japan’s Nikkei rose 1.8%.

Currencies and commodities: The dollar fell against the euro and the British pound, but gained versus the Japanese yen.

Oil for June delivery rose $1.25 to $109.53 a barrel.

Gold futures for June delivery rose $8.60 to $1,503.70 an ounce, after breaching a new intraday trading high of $1,506.20 earlier in the morning.

Bonds: The price on the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury fell, pushing the yield up to 3.39%.  To top of page


Article source: http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_topstories/~3/cmKTS2tyg-8/index.htm

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