Stock index futures log third straight quarterly gain

The S&P 500 ($SPX) fell 2.43 points, or 0.18%, and closed at 1,325.83. The strongest performers in the index were JDS Uniphase (JDSU) (+4.93%), XL Group (XL) (+4.02%), Frontier Communications (FTR) (+3.79%), Joy Global (JOYG) (+3.69%), and First Solar (FSLR) (+3.51%). The worst performer was Northrop Grumman Corp. (NOC) (-8.57%), which was hit hard after Citigroup cut its price target for the defense contractor. Carmax Inc. (KMX) (-7.20%), United States Steel Corp. (X) (-4.21%), and CBS Corp. (CBS) (-4.13%) rounded off the top losers.

The Nasdaq Composite ($COMPX) ended the session higher by 4.28 points, or 0.15%, on Thursday and it closed at 2,781.07. The top gainers in the Nasdaq-100 were Joy Global (JOYG) (+3.69%), First Solar (FLSR) (+3.51%), Symantec Corp. (SYMC) (+2.71%), and Biogen Idec (BIIB) (+2.18%). The weakest performers were Marvell Technology Group (MRVL) (-2.63%), Broadcom Corp. (BRCM) (-2.45%), Urban Outfitters (URBN) (-2.36%), and Seagate Technology (STX) (-2.11%).

Nasdaq Composite (Figure 3)

Friday's action is likely to be directed by the morning data, but gold, oil, and silver still look to hold up into the weekend and are not showing strong signs for an imminent correction. The overall market bias from yesterday's column remains unchanged.

Unless otherwise stated, the index action described in this article relates to the E-mini futures contracts for the respective indices. Actual index action may differ slightly in terms of pattern formation, although the market bias will remain the same.

Toni Hansen is president and co-founder of the Bastiat Group Inc., DBA Trading From Main Street. Toni is one of the most respected technical analysts and traders in the industry. She has been trading and educating new traders, money managers, professional market analysts and traders throughout the boom and bust of the last decade. She has worked in conjunction with some of the world's top financial exchanges. Learn more about Toni Hansen and the educational services she provides through her website at http://www.tonihansen.com.

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About the Author
Toni Hansen

Toni Hansen is president and co-founder of the Bastiat Group, Inc., DBA Trading From Main Street. Toni is one of the most respected technical analysts and traders in the industry. She has been trading and educating new traders, money managers, professional market analysts and traders throughout the boom and bust of the last decade. She has worked in conjunction with some of the world's top financial exchanges. Learn more about Toni Hansen and the educational services she provides through her website at http://www.tonihansen.com.

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