Stocks headed for a lower start despite Bank of America's beat
There have been some discussions recently that the economy's distress may be easing. And no better way to show an encouraging sign from the struggling banking sector with Bank of America (BAC) reporting significantly better-than-expected earnings for the first quarter. Similarly, not only did PepsiCo (PEP) report better-than-expected quarterly earnings, the soft-drink maker also offered about $6 billion to buy the shares it does not already own in its two largest bottlers.
And on the economic front, the index of U.S. leading indicators for March, scheduled to be released today at 10:00 AM, may show the longest recession since World War II will start loosening its grip in coming months, according to an economists' report today. The index likely dropped 0.2 percent in March following a 0.4 percent February decrease, according to Bloomberg.
But of course, we're still in a recession and some big banks will need more bailout bucks, Obama administration officials said Sunday. They added, however, that it is unlikely the government might need to take over any of them.
Overseas, Asian stocks edged higher Monday after the Chinese premier made positive assessment about his country's economy. European markets opened lower.