Stocks tied to Europe hopes

November 11, 2011: 8:34 AM ET
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NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- U.S. stocks looked to build on gains from the previous session Friday, as leaders in Italy and Greece took measures to curb the region's ongoing debt crisis.

The Dow Jones industrial average (INDU), S&P 500 (SPX) and Nasdaq (COMP) futures edged higher. Stock futures indicate the possible direction of the markets when they open at 9:30 a.m. ET.

"The small bounce back we're seeing is because there's a little hope that with new governments in Greece and Italy, we'll have more of an aggressive stance in putting austerity measures into place," said David Jones, chief market strategist at IG Markets.

Greece is scheduled to swear in a new prime minister, Lucas Papademos, Friday morning. Papademos, a former banker and European Central Bank vice president, was appointed Thursday and plans to form a new national unity government.

Meanwhile, Italy's senate will vote on the implementation of austerity measures later in the day.

"This is important because it's the first vote in Italy on austerity cuts, but we still have to have a second vote next week, so for now it looks like it might just give us a day off from worrying about the crisis," said Jones.

Europe's reluctant savior

U.S. stocks snapped back Thursday from a steep sell-off earlier this week, as Italian bond yields eased slightly and initial unemployment claims reached a seven-month low.

Talk of a possible emergency meeting of the European Central Bank helped calm investors' frazzled nerves Thursday. But trading will likely remain choppy until more decisive action is announced.

"The problem with this crisis is that almost every few days we get a fresh shock," said Jones. "I don't think by any stretch we've seen the worst of this. There's more volatility to come."

World markets: European stocks posted gains in midday trading. Britain's FTSE 100 (UKX) ticked up 0.9%, the DAX (DAX) in Germany added 1.6%and France's CAC 40 (CAC40) rose 1%.

Asian markets ended slightly higher. The Shanghai Composite (SHCOMP) finished just above break-even, the Hang Seng (HSI) in Hong Kong climbed 0.9% and Japan's Nikkei (N225) edged up 0.2%.

Economy: The University of Michigan will release the latest installment of its monthly consumer sentiment index on Friday. Analysts surveyed by Briefing.com expect the index to hit 61.3, up from 60.9 last month.

Companies: Shares of Nvidia (NVDA) climbed more than 4% in premarket trading after the chip maker posted a third-quarter profit late Thursday that more than doubled from a year earlier.

E*Trade (ETFC) shares slumped nearly 7% ahead of the opening bell, after the company said Thursday that it is not for sale -- ending ongoing speculation that the online brokerage would be acquired.

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Disney (DIS, Fortune 500)reported record-setting earnings after the closing bell Thursday, posting a 21% gain in net income for the 2011 fiscal year. Shares of the media giant jumped more than 4% early Friday.

Nordstrom (JWN, Fortune 500) also reported an increase in quarterly earnings after the close Thursday but lowered its full-year outlook, sending shares of the retailer 4% lower in premarket trading.

Currencies and commodities: The dollar fell against the euro and Japanese yen, but rose versus the British pound.

Oil for December delivery added 14 cents to $97.92 a barrel.

Gold futures for December delivery rose $8.20 to $1,767.80 an ounce.

Bonds: Bond markets were closed Friday for Veterans Day.  To top of page

Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,424.85 162.29 1.00%
Nasdaq 4,086.23 52.07 1.29%
S&P 500 1,862.31 19.33 1.05%
Treasuries 2.64 0.01 0.34%
Data as of 7:21pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 16.13 -0.26 -1.59%
Facebook Inc 59.72 0.63 1.07%
Yahoo! Inc 36.35 2.14 6.26%
Intel Corp 26.93 0.16 0.60%
Alcoa Inc 13.42 0.37 2.84%
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