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Dow Futures Rise Despite Debt Ceiling Stalemate

LONDON — Stock index futures at 7am ET indicate that the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI) may open up 0.35% this morning, while the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC) may open up 0.32%, as investors remain bullish despite politicians’ continued failure to raise the debt ceiling, and the decision by Fitch Ratings to put the USA’s AAA credit rating on negative watch for a potential downgrade. However, CNN’s Fear & Greed Index remains in the fear zone, and is expected to open at 34 this morning, after closing at 39 yesterday.

European stock markets were mostly lower this morning, as investors turned cautious, following US lawmakers’ continued failure to reach a deal that will enable the US government to continue borrowing money to meet its obligations from Friday onwards. However, there were no sharp falls, suggesting that investors believe that a solution will be found before the deadline. In Europe, luxury goods giant LVMH, which owns the Louis Vuitton and Moet Hennessey brands, dropped 5.7% after markets opened after the firm said that sales of fashion and leather goods rose by 4% on an organic basis in the first nine months of this year, missing analysts’ forecasts for a 6% gain. Elsewhere, European monthly car sales reached the highest level since 2011, and UK unemployment fell by the most since 1997. At 7am ET, the FTSE 100 was down 0.59%, the DAX was down 0.20%, and the CAC 40 was down 0.91%.

Today’s US consumer price index inflation reports will be delayed by the government shutdown, but October’s home builders’ index is expected to remain unchanged at 58 at 10am ET, while the Fed’s Beige Book is expected at 2pm.

On the corporate front, PNC Financial Services Group, Keycorp, Comerica, US Bancorp, PepsiCo, Bank of America, Abbott Laboratories and BlackRock are all due to report quarterly results before this morning’s opening bell, while eBay, IBM and American Express are expected to report after the closing bell. Yahoo! was up 1.5% in pre-market trading and may be in demand after beating analysts’ earnings forecasts last night, while chipmaker Intel was down 0.7% at 7am ET and may be weaker in trading today, after investors were unimpressed by its third-quarter earnings of $0.58 per share, despite consensus forecasts for just $0.53 per share.

Finally, let's not forget the Dow's daily movements can add up to some serious long-term gains. Indeed, Warren Buffett recently wrote: "The Dow advanced from 66 to 11,497 in the 20th Century, a staggering 17,320% increase that materialized despite four costly wars, a Great Depression and many recessions."

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> Roland does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. The Motley Fool owns shares in eBay.