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Futures soft as IBM faces SEC investigation

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Shares of Dow component and tech bellwether Intl. Business Machines (NYSE:IBM) are down 2.6% at $85 in pre-market trade after the company said yesterday it was facing an accounting investigation by the SEC regarding revenue-recognition practices in 2000 and 2001 related to on of its retail store solution units, which sells point-of-sale hardware and software used at checkout counters.

IBM said that the investigation is a "fact-finding investigation" and emphasized that authorities haven't reached any conclusions. The SEC hasn't denied or confirmed that it was investigation IBM's accounting methods.

Stock futures did continue lower in their overnight session just after IBM announced it was being investigated by the SEC, but modestly so and have held steady since the reports.

S&P futures (sp03m) currently trade down 0.7 points at 967.40, while NASDAQ futures (nd03m) are lower by 3.5 points at 1,187.00. Dow futures (dj03m) are currently off just 16 points at 8,887.

Fair value for the S&P 500 today is $-0.09. That price will not change during the session. HL Camp & Company has their computers set for program buying at $1.02 and set for program selling at $-1.36.

Online book retailer Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) $35.40 is slipping to $35.00 in pre-market trade after Legg Mason downgraded the stock to "sell" from "hold" based on valuation. The firm said AMZN appears rich as it now trades 49-times their 2004 untaxed cash EPS estimates of $0.73 and believes that current investor optimism fully captures potential returns over the next 12 months.

Today's economic calendar is light with May auto and truck sales scheduled for release during today's market trade (no fixed time). May auto sales are estimated to hold steady at 5.4 million compared to April's 5.4 million, while truck sales are forecasted to edge lower at 7.5 million compared to April's previously reported 7.6 million.

Foreign Markets

Overseas markets are mixed to lower. British bank Barclays (NYSE:BCS) $28.88, which trade as and American Depository Receipt (ADR) here in the U.S. fell 2.2% in its overseas trade as the bank said its operating profits and income during the quarter just ended March 31 were on par with last year's results. Provisions for bad loans were lower in the period in Personal Financial Services, but higher in its Barclaycard and Business Banking.


Hong Kong Hang Seng 9,662 +25.29 +0.26%, Japan Nikkei 225 8,564 +17.32 +0.20%, Taiwan Taiwan Weighted 4,678 -14.86 -0.32%,


France CAC 40 3,020 -27.54 -0.90%, Germany DAX 3,027 -37.45 -1.22%, Russia Moscow Times 5,470 -22.70 -0.42%, Switzerland Swiss Market 4,725 -29.10 -0.61%, United Kingdom FTSE 100 4,105 -23.90 -0.58%,

Jeff Bailey

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