segunda-feira, 2 de abril de 2007

Before the Bell

It's opening day - for the second quarter as well as most baseball teams - but Wall Street is showing little enthusiasm. Stock futures are pointing sideways as the market fails to shake its first-quarter funk.

All eyes are going to be on manufacturing data set for release by the Institute of Supply Management after the opening bell. In addition, the St. Louis Fed president will be talking about inflation, always a sore point for Wall Street. M&A activity that ordinarily might influence the market in the same way that a grand slam would a tied ball game is having less of an effect in these dreary times.

But here's what's happening: Kohlberg Kravis Roberts is buying First Data for $29 billion in cash, but the credit-card and payment processor plans to seek other bids. AT&T and Mexico's America Movil are in talks to purchase stakes in a company that controls Telecom Italia for about $6.4 billion.

And Xerox is acquiring office technology products company Global Imaging Systems for $1.5 billion. The Wall Street Journal says real estate magnate Sam Zell has cast the winning bid for Tribune Co. U.S. Treasuries and slightly higher, and the dollar is steady against major currencies.

Oil has fallen further below $66 a barrel, but Iran's continuing detention of 15 British sailors is keeping prices high. Starwood Hotels & Resorts CEO Steven Heyer has struck out at the company, which says he resigned after the board lost confidence in him.

Lisa Von Ahn News - Editor

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