US STOCKS-Wall Street to rise after string of losses

Tue Jan 7, 2014 9:12am EST

* U.S. trade deficit smallest in four years

* German unemployment unexpectedly falls

* Futures up: Dow 61 pts, S&P 6 pts, Nasdaq 16 pts

By Rodrigo Campos

NEW YORK, Jan 7 (Reuters) - A declining U.S. trade deficit and upbeat German data set the S&P 500 for a rebound on Tuesday after three days of losses.

The latest evidence of strengthening economic fundamentals in the United States came in the form of the smallest trade deficit in four years in November, as exports hit a record high and weak oil prices restrained import growth.

German unemployment unexpectedly fell in December on a seasonally-adjusted basis, bolstering hopes that domestic consumption could lift growth in Europe's biggest economy.

"Europe's data has not been bad. It gives optimism," said Kim Forrest, senior equity research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group in Pittsburgh.

She said investors awaited Friday's jobs report and the start of the corporate earnings season for trading incentives.

S&P 500 futures rose 6 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 61 points and Nasdaq 100 futures added 16 points.

Economic activity may be hurt by a polar vortex - strong upper-level winds in the Northern hemisphere that normally hover over the polar region but have been pushed south - that was enveloping the U.S. East Coast. The frigid air comes less than a week after the year's first snowstorm blanketed the region, including financial hubs New York and Boston.

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich showed off wearable computing devices on Monday, including ear buds that monitor the wearer's heart rate and a smart headset, as the world's largest chipmaker tries to get back on track after missing out on smartphones. Intel shares ticked up 0.3 percent in premarket trading.

Morgan Stanley cut its rating on Netflix shares to "underweight." Netflix fell 2.8 percent in premarket trading.

Shares of Neurocrine Biosciences soared 58 percent in premarket trading a day after it said its movement disorder drug showed a reduction in symptoms compared with a placebo in a mid-stage study.

Shares of therapeutic delivery systems provider Stereotaxis jumped 33 percent before the bell following completion of a clinical trial.

Janet Yellen made history on Monday as the U.S. Senate confirmed her as the first woman to lead the U.S. Federal Reserve in the central bank's 100-year history.

Eric Rosengren, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, said he expects gross domestic product growth of about 3 percent this year and added that low inflation is a concern.

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