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Wall Street heads for higher open as oil wavers

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[August 18, 2008]  NEW YORK (AP) -- Stock futures pointed to a modestly higher open Monday as investors monitored oil prices, which fluctuated below $114 a barrel even as Tropical Storm Fay hit Cuba.

Light, sweet crude slipped 4 cents to $113.73 a barrel in premarket electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, after rising in earlier trading.

Despite worries about Fay disrupting supplies from the Gulf of Mexico, oil prices remain near their lowest levels since early May, thanks to the recent rebound in the dollar and growing signs that developed economies around the world are slowing.

On Monday, the dollar retrenched a bit against the euro, pound and yen.

Dow Jones industrial futures rose 34, or 0.29 percent, to 11,697. Standard & Poor's 500 index futures rose 3.50, or 0.27 percent, to 1,303.20, and Nasdaq 100 index futures rose 8.50, or 0.43 percent, to 1,974.00.

Last week, the Dow finished lower, but the S&P and the Nasdaq composite index ended up.

In earnings news on Monday, Lowe's Cos. posted a nearly 8 percent drop in second-quarter profit. The results were better than expected, but the home improvement retailer also issued a disappointing outlook.

In economic data, the National Association of Home Builders is expected to release its monthly report on the housing market at 1 p.m. Eastern time. Economists surveyed by Thomson Financial/IFR anticipate the index to be flat for August compared to July.

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Bonds edged lower ahead of Wall Street's open. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note, which moves opposite its price, was at 3.83 percent, down from 3.84 percent late Friday. Gold prices rose.

Overseas, Japan's Nikkei stock average rose 1.12 percent. In morning trading, Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.53 percent, Germany's DAX index rose 0.31 percent, and France's CAC-40 rose 0.80 percent.


On the Net:

New York Stock Exchange: http://www.nyse.com/

Nasdaq Stock Market: http://www.nasdaq.com/

[Associated Press; By MADLEN READ]

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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