Day Traders Diary


U.S. equity futures are modestly lower amid downbeat overseas trade. The S&P 500 futures are off by 0.2%.

Looking at overnight developments:

Asian markets ended on a lower note. Japan's Nikkei shed 0.6%, China's Shanghai lost 1.0%, and Hong Kong's Hang Seng ended lower by 1.5%.

Regional economic data was limited:

New Zealand's FPI slipped 0.3% month-over-month to follow the prior rise of 1.9%.

Australia's home loans declined 1.5% month-over-month against the expectations of an increase of 0.6%.

South Korean unemployment was reported at 3.5%, ahead of the 3.2% expected by the market.

In news:

The cabinet of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to raise its March economic assessment for the third month in a row.

Two Japanese opposition parties have voiced their support for Kikuo Iwata as the deputy governor of the Bank of Japan. This comes after the main opposition party said it plans to vote against Mr. Iwata's appointment.

European indices are broadly lower with peripheral markets underperforming. Italy's MIB is down 1.6% and Spain's IBEX is off by 0.8%. Meanwhile, Germany's DAX is off by 0.2%, France's CAC is shedding 0.4%, and the United Kingdom's FTSE trades lower by 0.9%.

Several economic data points were released across the region:

Eurozone industrial production declined 0.4% month-over-month, worse than the downtick of 0.1% expected by the consensus.

French nonfarm payrolls declined 0.3% quarter-over-quarter, while the consensus expected a decrease of 0.1%. Meanwhile, the country's CPI rose 0.3% month-over-month (0.5% consensus).

Spanish CPI climbed 0.2% month-over-month, slightly hotter than the rise of 0.1% that had been expected by the market.

Looking at news:

Italy auctioned off 3-yr debt with the notes clearing the market at a yield of 2.48%, up from the previous auction yield of 2.30%. Similarly, the country's benchmark 10-yr yield is adding 10 basis points to 4.70%.

Reports indicate Cyprus and the Troika are in discussion regarding a smaller bailout agreement for the troubled sovereign. In addition, the Eurogroup is scheduled to hold a Friday evening meeting to discuss the issue.

In U.S. corporate news:

Boeing (BA 84.72, +0.56) is adding 0.7% after the Federal Aviation Administration approved the company's plan to test and ensure the safety of the electrical systems in Boeing's 787 Dreamliner jets.

Express (EXPR 16.35, -2.50) is down 13.3% after the company issued full-year earnings guidance, which was much lower than the Capital IQ consensus.

Spectrum Pharmaceutical (SPPI 8.25, -4.18) is plunging 34.0% after the company said it expects significantly lower sales of one of its drugs.

The weekly MBA Mortgage Index declined 4.7% to follow last week's rise of 14.8%.

February retail sales, retail sales ex-auto, export prices ex-agriculture, and import prices ex-oil will all be announced at 8:30 ET. Finally, January business inventories will be reported at 10:00 ET and the U.S. Treasury will report its February budget at 14:00 ET.

The U.S. Treasury will also reopen $21 billion in 10-yr notes.
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