U.S. Stock Futures Gain On Back Of Alcoa's Results, Outlook
01/09/2013| 08:31am US/Eastern
--Stock futures get a lift after Alcoa gets earnings season off to a strong start
--Europe markets gain as Alcoa's results, outlook help offset downbeat German data; Asia also broadly higher
--Alcoa rallies in premarket as revenue tops forecasts, aluminum demand outlook lifts sentiment
By Tomi Kilgore
NEW YORK--U.S. stock futures gained ground after Alcoa Inc. fourth-quarter results and outlook got earnings-reporting season off to a strong start.
About 90 minutes ahead of the open, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose 27 points, or 0.2%, to 13294. The Dow fell 55 points, or 0.4%, on Tuesday to suffer its third loss in four sessions.
Standard & Poor's 500-stock index futures added three points, or 0.2%, to 1455, and Nasdaq 100 futures advanced four points, or 0.1%, to 2718. Changes in stock futures don't always accurately predict stock moves after the opening bell.
Shares of Alcoa rallied 2.2% in premarket trading after the world's largest aluminum producer reported fourth-quarter adjusted earnings that matched estimates and revenue that was well above forecasts. The company also said it expects the pace of aluminum demand growth in 2013 to increase from 2012.
Alcoa is the first Dow component to report results so it is seen as marking the start of the fourth-quarter earnings-reporting season.
There are no major economic data scheduled for release.
European markets traded broadly higher, with the Stoxx Europe 600 up 0.3%, as Alcoa's upbeat outlook for aluminum demand helped offset disappointing data out of Germany.
German industrial production for November rose 0.2% on the month, falling well short of expectations of a 1% increase. Germany's DAX added 0.1%.
Asian markets also got a lift from Alcoa's results and outlook. Japan's Nikkei Stock Average climbed 0.7%, with a decline in the yen also helping underpin exporter shares, and Australia's S&P ASX 200 added 0.4%. Meanwhile, China's Shanghai Composite slipped less than 0.1% ahead of key export and import data due out Thursday.
Front month February crude oil futures eased 0.1% to $93.03 a barrel, while January gold futures declined 0.2% to $1,658.60 an ounce. The dollar edged higher against both the euro and the yen.
In other corporate news, Clearwire surged 7.7% after the wireless broadband company received an unsolicited buyout bid from Dish Network that would value the company at about $4.85 billion, topping an earlier offer from Sprint Nextel. Dish was still untraded in the premarket, while Sprint slumped 2.9%.
Apollo Group slid 8.6% after the for-profit education company reported fiscal first-quarter earnings and revenue that topped analyst estimates, but provided a full-year revenue outlook that was below current forecasts.
Apple gained 0.2% after the Wall Street Journal reported the technology giant was working on a less-expensive version of the iPhone amid increased competition.
Crosstex Energy lost 5.8% after the natural-gas company said it was offering 7.5 million common units for sale to the public.
Seagate Technology tacked on 3.5% after the hard disk drive company raised its outlook for fiscal second-quarter revenue.
Write to Tomi Kilgore at email@example.com