Morning Wire -- US Stock-Index Futures Higher

US index futures are higher this morning following the auction of 12- and 18-month Spanish debt. Demand was good, but yields on the 12-month bill rose from about 1.42% in March to 2.6% this month (our coverage here). In the US, March housing starts are announced this morning along with industrial production and utilization data. In Asia, foreign direct investment in China fell more than -6% year-over-year, pushing major indexes down slightly

At about 8:05 a.m. ET, Germany’s DAX is up 1.16% at 6,701.95 and France’s CAC 40 is up 1.31% at 3,247.41. In London, the FTSE 100 is up 0.79%, at 5,711.12.

In Asia, the Nikkei closed down -0.06% at 9,464.71. The Hang Seng index closed down -0.23% at 20,562.30 and Shanghai closed down -0.94% at 2,334.99.

Dow futures are up 0.48%, at 12,912.00. The Nasdaq is 0.36%, at 2,673.25 and the S&P is up 0.54%, at 1,371.20.

In the currency markets, the US dollar is stronger against the euro and the Japanese yen, and weaker against the British pound. The US dollar index is down -0.02% at 79.543.

In commodities, WTI and Brent crude are mixed this morning, with WTI up 0.69% at $103.64/barrel and Brent is down -0.09% at $118.57/barrel. Gold is up 0.39% this morning, at $1,656.10/ounce.

Paul Ausick