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Market Update : 
Market Opens Lower on Inflation Worries
Author: Elena Todorova
Last Update: 10:06 AM ET September 13 2005


U.S. stock futures are trading below the flat line in pre-market trading and poise to a lower opening on lingering concerns of rising inflation and borrowing costs after Katrina’s devastation, although oil futures keep steady prices in the range of $63 and $64 a barrel.

The inflation data due at 8.30 is expected to exert a significant influence on the market sentiment.
Crude-oil dropped for the third day with prices slightly over $63 a barrel.

Dow Jones futures were recently down 31 points, while Nasdaq futures were off 4 points and S&P futures were down 3.3 points.

Best Buy Inc., electronic chain, is expected Tuesday to report fiscal 2Q earnings of 38 cents a share.
Kroger Co., grocer, is expected to deliver fiscal 2Q earnings at 27 cents a share.


Economists expect the foreign-trade deficit to widen to $60 billion from $58.8 billion. The Commerce Department reveals its hand Tuesday at 8:30 a.m. EDT.


Asian-Pacific benchmarks finished the trading session mixed, recovering from early losses with the Nikkei flat at 0.04% after recent gains. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng declined 0.9% on oil and property stocks. China’s Shanghai Composite gained 1.6%, the highest level in 5 months on optimism over nontradable share reform. South Korea’s Kospi was steady at 0.02%. In currency markets the dollar bought 110.35 yen.

European stocks declined on falling crude-oil prices and forthcoming general elections in Germany, and even the lifted earnings and sales outlook from Nokia could not offset losses. The German DAX 30 slid 1.7% on profit-taking and concerns that economic reforms could be stopped after the election. The French CAC 40 lost 0.7%, London’s FTSE 100 also fell 0.7%.


Oil prices slid for the third consecutive session on expectations of lower demand growth. Light sweet crude for October delivery dropped 19 cents to $63.15 a barrel. Gasoline prices slightly fell to $1.8725 a gallon, while heating oil remained flat at $1.8125. London Brent lost 23 cents to $61.57 a barrel.

Gold price climbed in European trading. In London the precious metal was traded at the recommended price of $448.70 per troy ounce, up from $447.30. In Hong Kong gold fell $1 to $448.35. Silver traded unchanged at $6.97 per ounce.

The U.S. dollar was mixed against its major counterparts in European currency trading. The euro was quoted at $1.2285, up from $1.2281. The greenback changed hands at 110.83 yen, up from 110.16. The British pound was quoted at $1.8216, up from $1.8190.


Rural/Metro Corp., (RURL) provider of medical-transportation and private fire-protection services, announced that 4Q net income jumped to $2.95 a share from 6 cents a share in the same period last year on account of a tax adjustment on 10% higher revenue. The latest figure includes $71.5 million, or $2.87 a share, from a deferred tax adjustment.

Factory Card Outlet & Party Corp.,(FCPO) chain-store operator, posted 2Q net income of 30 cents a share, down vs. 56 cents in the same period a year ago despite a slight quarterly sales growth, missing analyst estimate of 59 cents a share. Comparable-store sales shed 0.5%.

Rockwell Collins (COL) reaffirmed its guidance for 2005, saying it still expects earnings of $2.15-$2.20 per share on revenues of about $3.45 billion. Looking further ahead, the company predicted earnings for fiscal 2006 of $2.45-$2.55 per share on revenue between $3.8 and $3.9 billion. Wall Street analysts had a consensus earnings forecast of $2.19 per share for 2005 and $2.50 per share for 2006.

Jo-Ann Stores (JAS) revealed the resignations of CFO Brian Carney and General Counsel Valerie Gentile Sachs, both effective at the end of the month. The fabric and craft retailer stated that both executives were leaving for jobs at other companies. Jo-Ann Stores said Jim Kerr, VP and controller, and Don Tomoff, treasurer, will lead the finance team during the transition period.


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Sources: Data collected by and from company press releases, filings and corporate websites.
Market data: BATS Exchange. Inc.

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