Stock Futures Higher as Wall Street Opens for 2012

Wall Street is looking to enter the new year in full rally mode as the futures are climbing this morning. The Dow futures are up just over 1% 12,386. Nasdaq 100 futures are adding 38 points in pre-market trading. The S&P 500 futures are also higher, adding nearly 20 points to 1,272.20.

The US markets are riding the wave of rallies across the Globe after shares in Hong Kong got the rally started, jumping 2.4% overnight. The Asian markets were buoyed by stronger than expected manufacturing activity.

The European markets mostly followed suit with their Asian counterparts. The bank heavy Stoxx 600 Europe is currently up nearly half a percent. The German DAX is up .68% in midday trading. European trading still has the tint of nervousness after Spain announced over the weekend that they had missed their deficit goals. Doing so caused them to start implementing tough austerity measures which is sure to weaken the recently elected government’s standing domestically.

Commodity prices continued their jump into the new year. Gold prices are shrugging off a poor December showing, adding $30 an ounce to their futures price. Oil prices followed suit, adding over $2 a barrel to gain a solid foothold on the $100+ mark.

The economic data calendar is spread out across the market day today. This morning investors are waiting for the manufacturing PMI. Consensus expectations are for a slight rise from the November number of 52.7. Later in the day the Federal Reserve will release their FOMC minutes from its December 13 monetary-policy meeting. Investors will get a look behind the curtain to see if members are leaning towards or away from another round of monetary easing.

Tonight all eyes will turn to American politics as the Iowa caucuses are set to begin. Mitt Romney has maintained a tie with Ron Paul but observers are expecting him to pull out the win. If he does the race for the nomination would be pretty much over due to his lead in NH. Surprises can happen on these type of state-wide votes so it will be interesting to see how well Ron Paul and the surging Rick Santorum do.

Stocks to watch today include Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK), Logitech International (NASDAQ:LOGI), Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU), STMicoelectronics (NYSE:STM), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)

Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) is up 7.05% in pre market trading at $4.82. NOK trades on average 27.86 million shares a day. NOK stock has been trading relatively flat over the past five trading days. The company has a market cap of 18.05 billion.

Logitech International (NASDAQ:LOGI) is up 6.30% in pre market trading at $8.27. LOGI trades 473 thousand shares a day on average. LOGI is up about $0.20 since last Wednesday. The company has a market cap of 1.35 billion.

Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU) is up 5.72% in pre market trading at $6.65. MU trades 29.47 million shares a day on average. MU bounced the latter part of last week from $6.10 to around $6.30. The company has a market cap of 6.21 billion.

STMicroelectronics (NYSE:STM) is up 7.08% in pre market trading at $6.35. STM trades 1.65 million shares a day on average. STM traded relatively flat last week. The company has a market cap of 5.25 billion.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is up slightly in pre market trading at $408.70. AAPL trades 11.70 million shares a day on average. AAPL shares finished $4 higher last week. Morgan Keegan cut their price target for Apple to $5.13 from $530 citing potentially lower than expected sales for iPad and Mac. The company has a market cap of 376.41 billion., Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) is up 1.39% in pre market trading at $175.50. AMZN trades 6.59 million shares a day on average. AMZN stock traded slightly lower last week. The company has a market cap of 78.72 billion.

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Danny is the old hat at Active Investor. One of the been around the block a few times traders, his main focus is on overall market conditions. Be it some new merger talk or Washington being Washington, you can expect Danny will be on top of it.
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