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Maybe a rebound
Stocks poised to open higher as investors absorb record oil prices and await key consumer report.
June 28, 2005: 7:00 AM EDT

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Stocks were set to open higher Tuesday as investors adjusted to record high oil prices and awaited a key consumer confidence report.

U.S. stock futures were up in early trading, indicating a higher opening for stocks which have faltered in the wake of crude's record run.

Oil prices closed at a record high for the third session in a row Monday, but eased a bit overnight. The August light crude contract lost 53 cents to $60.01 a barrel in electronic trading, while the August contract for Brent crude fell 60 cents to $58.71 -- a decline that market analysts said signaled a positive trading day for investors.

Worldwide markets took a break Tuesday after a turbulent start to the week amid jitters over peak oil prices and their potential impact on corporate profits. Major markets in Asia closed up, with indexes in Australia, Japan and Hong Kong finishing higher for the day. The Nikkei rose nearly 1 percent.

Major European markets were also up in early trading. Ben Funnell, European strategist with Merrill Lynch in London, said European investors are feeling optimistic about the prospect of "above-trend" economic growth and that central banks in the euro zone will hold off on further interest rate hikes.

Treasury prices fell, raising the yield on the 10-year note to 3.93 percent from 3.90 percent late Monday. The dollar was higher against the euro and the yen.

Investors are awaiting June consumer confidence numbers from the Conference Board at 10:00 a.m. ET. The index is expected to have risen to 104.1 from 102.2 in May, according to economists surveyed by Briefing.com.

Investors are also looking ahead to the start of the Federal Reserve's two-day meeting Wednesday. The central bank is expected to raise its target for the federal funds rate, an overnight bank lending rate, another quarter percentage point to 3.25 percent -- which would be the ninth consecutive hike since last June.

In key corporate news, Advanced Micro Devices (Research) announced Tuesday that it has filed an antitrust lawsuit accusing arch-rival Intel (Research) of an illegal monopoly in the x86 microprocessor market.

Some market analysts have predicted that the week heading into the long Independence Day holiday would be a rocky one for U.S. markets. Stocks took a beating at the end of last week as concerns over oil prices and the prospect of a increase in interest rates weighed on investors.

Art Hogan, the chief market analyst at Jeffries & Company, said Tuesday that he sees a positive sentiment in the marketplace.

"We had about a 3 percent sell-off last week and I think that was basically predicated on energy prices," said Hogan. "The fundamentals in the equity markets weren't being thrown out with the bath water. I think people see stocks as attractive at this juncture."

Looking ahead, the key questions on investors' minds is where energy prices and interest rates settle down and the impact those two factors will have on the economy.

For a more detailed look at the markets before the open, click here.  Top of page

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