Options Trading News

March 26, 2013  Tue 7:07 AM CT

Stocks are up slightly this morning as attention turns to economic recovery in the United States.

S&P 500 futures rose by about one-quarter of a percent, but have been losing their gains in the last hour as European indexes retreat. Most Asian markets fell in the overnight session after U.S. stocks closed lower on Monday. Economically sensitive commodities such as oil and copper are higher.

The first economic report comes at 8:30 a.m. ET when the Commerce Department releases the change in durable-goods orders for February. The Case-Shiller Index of Home prices follows at 9 a.m. Consumer confidence and new-home sales are both scheduled for 10 a.m. All four data points beat expectations last month.

The S&P 500 has spent the last week consolidating below its previous all-time highs from 2007, slowed by worries about debt problems in Cyprus. Other indexes such as the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the Russell 2000 and the Dow Jones Transportation Average have already broken out to record levels.

Foreign-exchange and commodity trading matches the bullish tone in equities. The euro, Canadian dollar and Australian dollar are all higher, while the safe-haven Japanese yen is lower across the board. Oil, natural and copper rose about half a percent, while precious metals remain weak. Most agricultural foodstuffs are posting small gains.

In company-specific news, Sonic may be active after reporting better-than-expected earnings. Revenue, however, missed consensus. Children's Place is indicated lower after issuing weak guidance for the current quarter.
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