Monday, May 16, 2011

US Stock Futures Drop After Data, Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) Eyed

US stock-index futures dropped on Monday after data showed that manufacturing activity in the New York region expanding at a much slower pace in May than in the preceding month.

At 8:43 am ET, the S&P 500 futures declined 4.20 points to 1,329.80. The Dow Jones Industrial average futures decreased 36 points to 12,520. The Nasdaq Composite futures dropped 3 points to 2,367.

The New York Fed reported Monday that its Empire State manufacturing index dropped to 11.9 in May from 21.7 in April. Economists expected the index to drop to 18 in May.

J.C. Penney Co. (NYSE: JCP) reported Monday that its fiscal first-quarter profit climbed to $64 million, or 28 cents a share, from $60 million, or 25 cents, in the prior-year quarter. Revenue increased 0.4% to $3.94 billion from $3.93 billion. Analysts, on average, expected the company to report earnings of 25 cents per share on revenue of $3.95 billion.

Shares of Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) edged higher in Monday's pre-market tradig after BMO Capital upgraded its rating on the company to Outperform from Market Perform citing chipset share gains, and better smartphone units and ASPs. The firm raised its price target on the stock to $69 from $61. 

On the economic front, the National Association of Homebuilders is scheduled to release its housing market index for May. 

European stocks retreated in afternoon trade. At 13:46 pm London Time, the UK FTSE fell 45.23 points, or 0.76%, to 5,880.64. The German DAX and French CAC decreased 1.23% and 1.38% respectively.

Asian stocks finished lower. The Nikkei 225 fell 90.47 points, or 0.94%, to 9,558.30. The Hang Seng index of Hong Kong dropped 315.64 points, or 1.36%, to 22,960.63.

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