(By Balaseshan) US stock-index futures pointed to a lower open on the Wall Street, amid sharp rise in Spain's borrowning costs and fresh concerns that Greece may leave the euro zone.
Mini Dow industrial average futures fell 105.00 points to 12,478.00. The Nasdaq Futures dipped 21.00 points to 2,538.50. Standard and Poor's 500 futures shed 11.10 points to 1,322.30.
On the US economic front, the National Association of Realtors will release pending home sales data, which is a leading indicator of housing market activity, at 10 am ET.
There has been speculation on Tuesday that China may soon launch a stimulus program to boost growth in the world's second largest economy. But, according to a Xinhua report, China may not roll out massive stimulus at this time.
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On the European news front, Egan-Jones ratings Co. downgraded Spain's sovereign credit rating for the third time in a month on the country's deteriorating economic outlook. Spain's borrowing rates approached the 7.0 percent mark that is considered unsustainable for governments to service their debts.
European Central Bank said it had not approved a bailout for Bankia, the No. 4 bank in Spain, and that such a recapitalization could not be provided by the Eurosystem. In addition, there were fresh concerns that Greece might leave the euro zone.
On Tuesday, U.S. stocks closed sharply higher amid hopes that Greece will remain in the euro zone and China might announce additional stimulus measures to support growth.
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In corporate news, Pep Boys - Manny, Moe & Jack (NYSE:PBY) plunged 23.17 percent in premarket after the automotive aftermarket service company has terminated the proposed merger with The Gores Group, which was announced on January 30, 2012. Gores Group has agreed to pay Pep Boys a fee of $50 million and to reimburse Pep Boys for certain merger-related expenses.
Research In Motion Ltd. (NASDAQ:RIMM) fell 10.24 percent in premarket after the BlackBerry maker expects an operating loss for its first quarter, due to the ongoing competitive environment. The company also predicts lower volumes and a highly competitive pricing dynamics in the marketplace. The company reiterated that its financial performance will continue to be challenging for the next few quarters.
Monsanto Co. (NYSE:MON) gained 1.97 percent in premarket after the seed-and-traits company raised its earnings outlook for 2012 citing continued strong third-quarter sales.
The Fresh Market Inc. (NASDAQ:TFM) gained 1.92 percent in premarket after the grocery retailer raised its full year earnings guidance backed by better-than-expected quarterly results amid improvement in margins.
Linkedin Corp. (NYSE:LNKD) rose 1.37 percent in premarket after Citigroup reportedly recommended buying the shares backed by the recent retreat.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) edged 0.66 percent lower in premarket after its Chief Executive Tim Cook reportedly said technology for televisions was of "intense interest" but stressed the company's efforts would unfold gradually amid speculation that it was on the brink of unveiling a revolutionary iTV.
The European markets traded lower on Spain worries, with Germany's DAX dipping 0.24 percent to trade at 6,381.40. France's CAC40 plunged 1.46 percent to 3,039.70. Britain's FTSE 100 fell 1.00 percent to 5,337.01.
Asian markets closed lower on Spain bailout concerns. The Shanghai Composite Index dipped 0.21 percent to end at 2,384.67. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 1.92 percent to close at 18,690.22. Japan's Nikkei 225 shed 0.28 percent to close at 8,633.19. India's BSE Sensex finished at 16,312.15, down 0.77 percent.
Ahead of the opening bell, crude oil futures plunged 1.44 percent to $89.45 per barrel. Gold futures added 0.25 percent to $1,552.60 per ounce.
In the currency market, the euro fell 0.53 percent against the U.S. dollar to 1.2437, and the British pound dipped 0.33 percent against the greenback to 1.5589. The dollar shed 0.49 percent against the Japanese yen to 79.1000.