* Bank of America rises after results
* Nasdaq pressured by Intel, IBM results
* Cymer soars in premarket, ASML to buy
* Dow up 10 pts, S&P up 3.1 pts, Nasdaq down 1.75 pt
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, Oct 17 (Reuters) - The Dow and S&P 500 index
futures edged higher on Wednesday as Bank of America rose after
reporting a quarterly profit, but the Nasdaq composite index
slipped on weak tech company results.
Bank of America Corp shares rose 1.8 percent to
$9.63 in premarket trading after reporting $340 million in net
earnings, or nil per share. Analysts estimates were for a
Citigroup and Goldman Sachs posted strong
results this week, also indicating improvement in the financial
sector. But JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo
Tech shares were pressured a day after both Intel Corp
and IBM reported disappointing quarterly
results, sending the stocks sharply down before the opening
"There was a lot of pessimism going into earnings season,
but overall I'm happy with what I'm seeing. Things seem to be
improving for banks," said Scott Schermerhorn, chief investment
officer at Granite Investment Advisors in Concord, New
"IBM and Intel were weak, but it isn't surprising to see
such globally exposed companies hit by weakness in Europe and
S&P 500 futures rose 3.1 points and were above fair
value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account
interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the
contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 10
points while Nasdaq 100 futures fell 1.75 points.
Equities are coming off their best two-day advance in a
month, a rise of 1.8 percent. Those gains came as some
disappointments early in the earnings season were offset by
strong results from such bellwethers as Johnson & Johnson
Still, the first report cards from companies in the tech
sector suggested reasons for caution. Late Tuesday, Intel gave a
weak fourth-quarter revenue outlook while IBM posted
third-quarter revenue that came in under expectations.
The tech sector is closely monitored because it is one
measures of business spending. Intel fell 4 percent to $21.45 in
premarket while IBM lost 4.1 percent to $202.45. Both firms are
Earnings for S&P 500 components are seen falling 2.3 percent
from a year ago, with the main culprite the slowing global
economy. But the latest forecast does mark a slight improvement
from estimates last week, according to Thomson Reuters data.
PepsiCo reported a drop in third-quarter earnings,
hurt by a stronger U.S. dollar, while Textron's earnings
missed expectations, though it raised its full-year profit view.
ASML agreed to buy Cymer, its key
supplier of a light-based technology crucial to making a new
generation of much smaller chips, for $2.5 billion. The stock
surged 65 percent to $79 before the bell.
While earnings have been the primary driver for shares,
Europe's debt crisis continues to remain in focus. Shares in
Europe rose 0.3 percent.
U.S. stocks closed 1 percent higher on Tuesday, lifted by
strong results from J&J and Goldman.