Dow Jones Industrial Average Higher Today on Interest Rate Speculation

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For Sept. 21, 2015, here are your stock market futures, earnings reports, top stock market news, and stocks to watch

Stock Futures Today

DJIA futures
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average today (Monday, Sept. 21) rose more than 111 points this morning after St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard said he would have supported an interest rate hike during last week’s FOMC meeting. He also laid out the case for tightening monetary policy in the United States. Global markets were largely mixed today after Greek voters elected the Syriza Party to remain in power, although it remains unclear if they will continue to battle European creditors over the nation’s crippling debts.

On Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 289 points after investors weighed Thursday’s decision by the U.S. Federal Reserve. Last week, the central bank elected to keep interest rates near zero stoked amid concerns about the potential impact of continuing weak global growth on U.S. companies.

Markets will aim to rebound after a choppy week of trading. The S&P 500 ended flat last week, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 1.8%, and the Nasdaq dropped 1.4%.

Top News in the Stock Market Today

  • The Stock Market Today: Today, investors will keep an eye on the Atlanta inflation expectations report and a speech by Atlanta Fed Bank President Dennis Lockhart. The markets are moving higher today on speculation that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates during its October meeting.
  • Oil Outlook: Oil prices were on the rise this morning on news that U.S. energy production was on the decline. This morning, WTI prices added more than 2.7% to hit $45.91, while Brent oil prices added 2.3% to hit $48.89. According to Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI), American producers have mothballed and slashed rigs from production for three consecutive weeks.
  • Earnings Reports: Companies reporting earnings include Red Hat Inc. (NYSE: RHT), Lennar Corp. (NYSE: LEN), IGATE Corp. (Nasdaq: IGTE), Casey’s General Stores Inc. (Nasdaq: CASY), Nordic American Tankers Ltd. (NYSE: NAT), Brown Shoe Inc. (NYSE: BWS).

Pre-Market Movers in the Stock Market Today: AAPL, LEN, GPRO

  • Pre-Market Movers No. 1, AAPL: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) were up 0.6% this morning despite news that the technology giant was hacked. The company said that it was removing malicious software from its iOS App Store for the iPhone and iPad. This is considered the first successful large cyberattack on the firm’s mobile software store.
  • Pre-Market Movers No. 2, LEN: Shares of Lennar Corp. (NYSE: LEN) were up 2.2% this morning on news that the company saw a 26% rise in quarterly profits and that the nation’s second-biggest homebuilder beat Wall Street expectations. The firm said that home orders – the metric that best indicates future revenue in the industry – jumped more than 10% across all regions in the third quarter, with the exception of Houston.
  • Pre-Market Movers No. 3, GPRO: Shares of GoPro Inc. (Nasdaq: GPRO) slipped nearly 5% this morning after the company received a tough review from investment news giant Barron’s. The investment publication said that shares could fall from their Friday closing prices of $35.15 all the way to $25. Barron’s said that increasing competition and a weaker product line could fuel the stock’s decline.

Stocks to Watch Today: ATML, VLKAY, CHTR, TWC

  • Stocks to Watch No. 1, ATML: The semiconductor industry continues to consolidate, a prediction made months ago by Money Morning Defense & Tech Specialist Michael A. Robinson. This morning, British firm Dialog Semiconductor announced plans to purchase California-based Atmel Corp. (Nasdaq: ATML) for $4.4 billion. Last year, Dialog had been subject to rumors that it was trying to purchase an Austrian rival, but the deal broke down. Atmel shares were up more than 16% this morning.
  • Stocks to Watch 2, VLKAY: Keep an eye on German automotive giant Volkswagen AG (OTCMKTS ADR: VLKAY). Shares of the auto giant fell more than 20% in overseas trading today after a weekend admission by the firm that it rigged emissions tests in the United States for roughly 500,000 diesel cars. The company’s CEO apologized in a statement and ordered an investigation into the company’s practices. Meanwhile, the firm has stopped sales of all diesel vehicles.
  • Stocks to Watch 3, CHTR: Today, shareholders of Charter Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: CHTR) and Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) will vote on the proposed $56.7 billion merger between the two companies. The deal, which was announced in May, will create the nation’s second-largest broadband Internet provider and third-largest video provider. Last week, the Federal Communications Commission began its 180-day schedule to review the deal.

Today’s U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)

  • Existing Home Sale at 10 a.m.
  • Atlanta Fed Business Inflation Expectations at 10 a.m.
  • 4-Week Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
  • 3-Month Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
  • 6-Month Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
  • Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President Dennis Lockhart speaks at 1 p.m.

What Investors Must Know This Week

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