Morning Wire — US Stock-Index Futures Rising into Holiday Weekend

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Stock-index futures are up again this morning as US markets await reports on durable goods orders and personal income and spending for November. Both are expected to show growth, continuing the nearly unbroken stream of recent positive economic news. Today is the last trading day before a three-day holiday weekend, and volume on the US markets is expected to be thinner than it has been recently. European and Asian markets have been positive today probably a result of the good news on the US economy. The political agreement on a temporary extension of US payroll tax cuts and unemployment benefits has also boosted overseas markets and will have some impact on US markets today as well.

At about 7:45 a.m. ET, Germany’s DAX is up 0.31% at 5,870.18 and France’s CAC 40 is up 1.07%, at 3,104.57. In London, the FTSE 100 is up 1.02%, at 5,512.71.

In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index is up 1.37%, at 18,629.20. The Nikkei index is down -0.77%, at 8,395.16, and the Shanghai index is up 0.85%, at 2,204.78.

Dow futures are up 0.45%, at 12,158.00. The Nasdaq 100 is up 0.39%, at 2,269.50 and the S&P 500 is up 0.53%, at 1,255.70.

In the currency markets, the US dollar is weaker against the euro and the Japanese yen, and stronger against the British pound.

In commodities, WTI is higher and Brent crude is lower this morning, with WTI at $99.72/barrel and Brent at $107.45/barrel. Gold is down fractionally, at $1,609.50.