Stock Futures Extend Gains on Retail Sales Data


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Stock-index futures climbed further into positive territory on Monday after a report on retail sales came in well ahead of expectations, helping traders overcome a disappointing manufacturing report and worries about Europe.

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Today's Markets

As of 8:41 a.m. ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose 73 points to 12862, S&P 500 futures climbed 7 points to 1372 and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 13.5 points to 2707.

The markets are coming off the worst weekly selloff of the year, in which the S&P 500 shed 2%. The economic and corporate calendar is quite full this week.

Retail sales jumped 0.8% in March, more than doubling expectations for a 0.3% rise. Excluding the auto segment, sales were up 0.8%, topping estimates of 0.6%. Dan Greenhaus, chief global strategist at BTIG, wrote in a note to clients following the report that the report is "supportive of the moderate pace of consumption growth expected in the first quarter." Still, Greenhaus warned that the consumption sector is still likely to be weak in the first quarter as consumers have had to deal with largely stagnant wages and income.

The New York Federal Reserve’s regional manufacturing gauge dropped to 6.56 in April from 20.21 in March, far short of expectations of 18. Readings above 0 point to expansion, while those below indicate contraction.

On the earnings front, Citigroup (NYSE:C) posted a first-quarter profit of 95 cents a share on $19.4 billion in revenue. Excluding certain debt valuation adjustments, the banking giant earned $1.11 a share on $20.2 billion. Analysts expected an EPS of $1.00 on sales of $19.81 billion.

The eurozone debt crisis is once again coming back into focus. The yield on Spain's 10-year bond surged to 6.14% from 5.98% on Friday. Additionally, the cost to insure the country's debt spiked to an all-time high, according to data from London-based Markit. Analysts have grown increasingly concerned about the country's ability to close its budget gap amid a weak economy and high borrowing costs.

Commodities were mostly to the downside. Crude oil traded in New York dipped 49 cents, or 0.49%, to $102.34 a barrel. Wholesale RBOB gasoline fell 3 cents, or 0.84%, to $3.318 a gallon.

In metals, gold fell $12.70, or 0.76%, $1,647 a troy ounce.

Foreign Markets

European blue chips rose 0.4%, the English FTSE 100 gained 0.56% to 5683 and the German DAX climbed 0.56% to 6621.

In Asia, the Japanese Nikkei 225 sold off by 1.7% to 9471 and the Chinese Hang Seng dropped 0.44% to 20611.

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