Stock exchange building fascia
The S&P 500 Futures remain on the upside after the S&P 500 Index added 7 points (+0.23%) to 3389 yesterday, eventually surpassing its February record close of 3386.

Later today, the U.S. Federal Reserve will release its latest FOMC meeting minutes.

European indices are slightly bullish. The U.K. Office for National Statistics has released July CPI at +1.0% (vs +0.6% on year expected). The European Commission has posted final readings of July CPI at +0.4% on year, as expected.

Asian indices closed on a mixed mood as the Hong Kong HSI and the Chinese CSI faced a down move when the Japanese Nikkei and the Australian ASX were up. This morning, official data showed that Japan's exports declined 19.2% on year in July (-20.9% expected), while core machine orders dropped 7.6% on month in June (+2.0% expected).

WTI Crude Oil futures are under pressure. The American Petroleum Institute (API) reported that U.S. crude-oil inventories fell 4.3 million barrels last week. Later today, EIA will release official crude oil inventories data for the same week.

Gold slightly declined below 2000 dollars as the US dollars tries to steady before Fed minutes.

Gold fell 13.02 dollars (-0.65%) to 1989.42 dollars while the dollar index rose 0.03pt to 92.297.

U.S. Equity Snapshot

Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), the health care products company, "entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Momenta (MNTA), a company that discovers and develops novel therapies for immune-mediated diseases, in an all cash transaction of 52.5 dollars per share, or approximately 6.5 billion dollars."

Source: TradingView, GAIN Capital

Target (TGT), the retailer, is expected to soar after reporting quarterly sales that smashed expectations. Second quarter sales jumped 24%, the fastest pace in the company's history. Adjusted EPS also beat forecasts.

Lowe's (LOW), the second-largest home improvement retailer in the US, is gaining ground before hours after posting better than expected quarterly earnings, on surging online sales. 

Home Depot (HD), the home improvement specialty retailer, was upgraded to "buy" from "neutral" at BofA Securities. 

Agilent (A), an international life sciences and diagnostics company, fell after hours on profit taking as the stock was trading close to its all-time highs despites quarterly earnings topping estimates.

Cree (CREE), the semiconductor company, lost ground in extended trading on weak outlook for the current quarter.
Related tags: Equities

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