Stock Futures Mixed; Dow Chemical and DuPont Talk Merger
New York (Dec 9) US stock futures were mixed Wednesday morning in a session likely driven by individual stock news, such as reports Dow Chemical (DOW - Get Report) and DuPont (DD) are in merger talks.
S&P 500 futures added 0.05%, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures gained 0.21%, and Nasdaq futures slid 0.08%.
Dow Chemical climbed more than 6% in premarket trading on reports the chemicals company is in talks to combine with DuPont. The $120 billion merger would likely result in a three-way breakup so the companies can reconfigure assets to streamline performance.
Oil prices clawed back from some of the losses suffered over the past few sessions. West Texas Intermediate crude oil rose 1.5% to $38.08 a barrel after recent API data showed crude stocks fell by 1.9 million barrels in the past week. The more closely watched Energy Information Administration data will be released mid-morning.
Yahoo! (YHOO) jumped 2.6% in premarket trading after confirming that it will suspend a planned spinoff of its stake in Alibaba (BABA) . The board will now focus on a reverse spinoff, which will see Yahoo!'s assets and liabilities transferred to a new company.
Hertz (HTZ - Get Report) shares jumped 3% in premarket trading after activist investor Carl Icahn increased his stake in the company to 14.3%. The car-rental company has lost 45% in share value since the beginning of the year.
Kinder Morgan (KMI) slid 5% after slashing its 2016 quarterly dividend to 12.5 cents a share from a current 51 cents. The company said the funds will be used for expansion capital requirements and to maintain a positive investment credit rating.
Costco (COST) shares fell 3% after the membership retail chain missed quarterly estimates on its top- and bottom-lines. The company earned $1.09 a share, 8 cents below forecasts, while revenue of $27.22 billion missed expectations by $430 million.
MasterCard (MA - Get Report) shares climbed slightly higher after the credit-card company announced a new $4 billion share buyback program. The fresh funds will be used when the previous plan runs out.
Dave & Buster's (PLAY) made moves higher in premarket trading after swinging to a profit in its third quarter. The company earned 12 cents a share, four times as much as analysts had expected, while same-store sales rose 8.8%.
Smith & Wesson (SWHC - Get Report) slipped despite a better-than-expected quarter. The gunmaker has seen a 13% jump over the previous two sessions after President Obama called for tighter regulations on firearms.