U.S. Stock Futures Little Changed Before Consumer Report
U.S. stock futures were little changed, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index heading for its biggest weekly gain in more than two months on optimism that Greece will stay in the euro and as investors awaited a report on consumer sentiment.
Quest Software Inc. (QSFT) advanced 4.2 percent after people with knowledge of the matter said Dell Inc. is in discussions to acquire the company. Illinois Tool Works Inc. (ITW) climbed after JPMorgan Chase & Co recommended buying the company’s shares.
U.S. stocks yesterday reversed losses as Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti said that “Europe can have euro bonds soon,” and Italy could help push Germany to support the idea of collective debt. Stocks had dropped earlier as officials said China’s biggest banks may fall short of loan targets for the first time in at least seven years amid an economic slowdown.
French 10-year bonds extended an advance today, driving the yield on the securities to an all-time low. Yields on German 10- year securities yesterday reached a record low.
“Declines in borrowing costs are helping stocks” said Louis de Fels, a Paris-based money manager at Raymond James Asset Management International, which oversees $35 billion worldwide. “The market can have a positive dynamic in the short term.”
The S&P 500 is heading for a 2 percent gain this week, its biggest increase since the week ending March 16, as Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao pledged to focus more on bolstering growth.
The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan final index of consumer sentiment climbed to 77.8, the highest since January 2008, from 76.4 the prior month, a report may show. That would confirm preliminary data released earlier in the month.
Quest rallied 4.2 percent to $26.24 in Germany. Dell (DELL) is in discussions to acquire Quest, a maker of tools that help companies manage their computer systems, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Dell is among several companies that made offers for Quest Software after it agreed in March to be bought by private-equity and venture-capital firm Insight Venture Partners for about $2 billion, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private.
Illinois Tool Works climbed 2 percent to $56.88 in Frankfurt trading. The company was raised to overweight, the equivalent of buy, at JPMorgan Chase & Co.
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