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21Jul2015 Pre-Market Commentary: U.S. Futures Flat, Gold Steady, U.S. Dollar At 3 Month High And Oil Off Lows

Written by Gary

U.S. stock index futures were little changed this morning ahead of a raft of earnings from technology giants, including Apple. The dollar continues to trade at a three-month high and oil has temporarily halted its slide.

Markets are expected to open flat and then start to slide.

Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

European markets are lower today with shares in Germany off the most. The DAX is down 0.28% while France's CAC 40 is off 0.11% and London's FTSE 100 is lower by 0.10%.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Gold hits five-year low under $1,100 on Chinese selling

LONDON (Reuters) - Gold prices plunged as much as 4 percent to their lowest in more than five years on Monday as sellers in top consumer China offloaded the metal.

Wall St higher as earnings boost confidence

(Reuters) - Wall Street was higher in early afternoon trading on Monday as better-than-expected earnings from big companies overshadowed a fall in commodities.

Morgan Stanley beats estimates as trading revenue jumps

(Reuters) - Morgan Stanley reported a stronger-than-expected second-quarter profit as its bond and equities trading businesses handily outperformed those of its Wall Street rivals.

Gold Hits 5-Year Low

Gold prices fell to five-year lows, weighed down by dollar's relentless gains as the prospect of the first U.S. interest rate increase in more than nine years loomed.

Fed to adopt new capital surcharges for eight largest U.S. banks

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Reserve will meet on Monday to adopt a new rule for the eight largest U.S. banks to hold more equity capital, amid fears on Wall Street that the measure may make it less profitable.

Greece reopens banks, starts repaying some debts

ATHENS (Reuters) - Greece reopened its banks and ordered billions of euros owed to international creditors to be repaid on Monday in the first signs of a return to normal after last week's deal to agree a tough new package of bailout reforms.

Apple Waits as App Developers Study Who's Buying Its Watch

Facebook and other companies have struggled with how wearers of the device could have a good experience with their apps tailored to a small screen.

Lockheed to buy Sikorsky for $9 billion; reviews options for IT business

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Lockheed Martin Corp said Monday it would buy Sikorsky Aircraft, the helicopter unit of United Technologies Corp , for $9 billion, and would review the possible sale or spinoff of $6 billion in other information technology and services businesses.

Strong Trading Revenue Buoys Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley's second-quarter profit beat analysts' expectations as the Wall Street firm increased trading revenue.

Pearson exploring sale of Financial Times: Bloomberg

LONDON (Reuters) - British publisher Pearson is exploring the sale of its Financial Times newspaper after receiving interest from potential buyers, Bloomberg reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

PayPal returns to market with $52 billion valuation

(Reuters) - PayPal Holdings Inc shares jumped as much as 11 percent in their highly anticipated return to the Nasdaq after more than a decade in eBay Inc's fold, valuing the digital payment processor at about $52 billion.

Blackstone, Corsair clinch $4 billion deal for First Eagle

(Reuters) - Private equity firms Blackstone Group LP and Corsair Capital have agreed to acquire a majority stake in First Eagle Investment Management, valuing the company at around $4 billion including debt, First Eagle announced on Monday.

Wall St. Drifts Higher as Solid Corporate Earnings Roll In

Stock markets across Europe rose as investors' concerns about Greece's future in the European Union were eased.

Q1 GAAP EPS Lowest Since 2012: The S&P500 Is Now Trading Over 20x PE Using Unadjusted Earnings

For years we had been covering the steady divergence between plain vanilla GAAP EPS and their "as adjusted" non-GAAP comparable, a number which accountants generally frown upon and which investors love as it always shows a far rosier earnings (and cash flow) picture than is in reality. Lately, this divergence rose to a level not seen since the financial crisis when as we showed recently, non-GAAP addbacks accounted for a quarter of the entire Q4 non-GAAP EPS of the S&P500.

Then, with the usual several year delay, the mainstream press figured out that an ever greater amount of corporate "earnings" is totally bogus. This is what the AP's Bernard Candon wrote last month in a reported titled "Experts worry that 'phony numbers' are misleading investors":

"as the stock market climbs ever higher, professional investors are warning that companies are presenting misleading versions of their results that ignore a wide variety of normal costs of running a business to make it seem like they're doing better than they really are."

The financial analysts who are supposed to fight corporate spin are often playing along. Instead of challenging the companies, they're largely passing along the rosy numbers in reports recommending stocks to investors.

"Companies are tilting the results," says fund manager Tom Brown of Second Curve Capital, "and the analysts are buying it."

An analysis of results from 500 major companies by The Associated Press, based on data provided by S&P Capital IQ, a research firm, found that the gap between the "adjusted" profits that analysts cite and bottom-line earnings fi ...

U.S. Stocks Edge Higher

U.S. stocks edged higher Monday following a batch of better-than-expected earnings reports, while a selloff in the gold market battered shares of mining companies.

Internal Panel Says Toshiba Inflated Earnings by $1.2 Billion

The committee said the company overstated earnings for seven years after top executives pressured managers to meet unachievable profit targets.

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