Wednesday, April 6, 2011

US Stock Futures Point to Higher Open, Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) Eyed

US stock-index futures rose on Wednesday after Monsanto posted second-quarter earnings that topped analysts’ estimates.  

At 8:40 am ET, the S&P 500 futures rose 8 points to 1,334.70. The Dow Jones Industrial average futures advanced 63 points to 12,390. The Nasdaq Composite futures climbed 19 points to 2,342.25.

Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) rose more than 1.5% after the company agreed with with Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. (NYSE: LGF) to obtain exclusive Internet streaming rights to the first four seasons of the TV series “Mad Men.”

Shares of American Superconductor (NASDAQ AMSC) plunged more than 45% after the company said that its fourth quarter revenue will fall below expectations because a Chinese company refused to accept some shipments. Late on Tuesday, AMSC said Sinovel Wind, which accounts for about 75 percent of AMSC's revenue, refused to accept March shipments, due to the slowdown in China's wind power market. AMSC also said Sinovel intends to reduce its level of inventory before accepting further shipments.

No major economic reports are on the agenda for Wednesday. 

European stocks advanced in afternoon trade. At 13:42 pm London Time, the UK FTSE rose 45.03 points, or 0.75%, to 6,052.09. The German DAX and French CAC increased 0.70% and 0.15% respectively.

Asian stocks finished mixed. The Nikkei 225 fell 31.18 points or 0.32% to 9,584.37. The Hang Seng index of Hong Kong rose 134.47 points or 0.75% to 24,285.05.

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