Futures are mixed this morning with S&P futures showing a slight gain of 2 points, NASDAQ futures are down 9 points and Dow Futures are higher by 33 points. Fair value for the S&P 500 today is $3.85. HL Camp & Company has their computers set for program buying at $5.21 and set for program selling at $2.19. Fair value for the NASDAQ-100 today is $8.95
Crude Oil futures on the rise
Crude oil has been on the rise in recent weeks after hitting a relative low of $24.64 on July 18th for the September 2001 contract (cl01u). This morning break above the $28 per barrel level could have oil and oil service stocks finding bidders once again. Oil executives have been impressed with OPEC's ability to keep oil prices above the $25 per barrel level and this could give money managers renewed faith for the prospects of energy stocks.
Productivity, the measure of how much employees produced per hour worked, jumped 2.5 percent in the second quarter. The number was the largest increase in a year, and almost doubled analysts' expectations. Of course productivity was up. With all the recent layoffs, the remaining workers have to pick up the excess workload. Squeezing more out of fewer workers also helped to keep labor costs at a modest 2.1 gain in first quarter, compared to a 5 percent jump in the first quarter. Hours worked fell 2.4 percent, the largest decline in a decade. So in conclusion, there are fewer workers working fewer hours, but they're being more productive.