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Stock futures give back gains

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Stock futures have slipped lower as the opening bell approaches, signaling a mixed to lower open at the beginning of today's trading. S&P futures currently trade down 0.3 points at 1,108, while NASDAQ futures trade lower by 5 points at 1,348.50 while Dow futures are down 8 point at 10,127.

Fair value for the S&P 500 today is $1.28. That price will not change during the day. HL Camp & Company has their computers set for program buying at $2.16 and set for selling at $0.00. Fair value for the NASDAQ-100 today is $4.75.

Mixed semiconductor picture

Last night's reported semiconductor book-to-bill reports shows that for the first time in 16 months, orders received outpaced shipments as the book-to-bill reading came in at 1.04. This has J.P Morgan telling clients, "We believe better than expected book-to-bill results may buoy semi cap equipment stocks, if not push them slightly higher."

Shares of Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) is edging 34-cents higher at $26.40, Novellus Systems (NASDAQ:NVLS) is trading up 43-cents at $51.21 and KLA-Tencor (NASDAQ:KLAC) is bid higher at $64.81, up 41-cents from yesterday's close.

A warning from Lattice Semiconductor (NASDAQ:LSCC) $16.46 may weigh on chip makers this morning. Late yesterday, LSCC reported a loss for its first quarter and warned that revenues would be flat in the second quarter. Currently, we're seeing trades at the $14.20 level (-13.73% from close).

Pulte Homes beats by 20-cents

Yesterday's upside earnings from DR Horton (NYSE:DHI) and Centex (NYSE:CTX) helped the homebuilders buck the broader market trend. This morning, fellow homebuilder Pulte Homes (NYSE:PHM) $52.06 reported Q1 earnings of $1.12 per share, which was 20-cents better than consensus estimates of $0.92 a share. PHM said revenues rose 64% year/year to $1.38 billion versus the $1.28 billion consensus. The company sees FY02 EPS of $6.75-$7.00, which would be higher than consensus estimates of $6.59.

Jeff Bailey
Senior Market Technician
Option Investor

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