3 Stocks Set to Beat the S&P Today


LONDON -- Stocks are set to end what has been a fairly positive week in the red today after data from China overnight suggested the global economy is still far from booming. Trade numbers showed that exports from the Asian giant collapsed in July, growing just 1% year on year, while imports rose 4.7%. At the same, time new local currency lending fell from 919.8 billion Yuan in June to just 540.1 billion Yuan in July, lower than analyst estimates and again promoting speculation that China will need to increase its economic stimulus efforts.

U.S. markets look set to follow their European peers today, with premarket trade showing the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC) set to open 0.3% lower.

Within this negative session, there are, as always, some companies managing to outperform. Here are three American depositary receipts that are set to beat the S&P today.

Barclays (NYS: BCS)
The bank at the heart of the LIBOR scandal is up 3.5% in London, buoyed after it appointed a new chairman in the first move to replace those ousted because of the LIBOR controversy. The bank named former Bank of England executive director David Walker, saying he will start on Nov. 1. He will replace Marcus Agius, who resigned and then continued to work at the bank after CEO Bob Diamond made his surprise resignation last month. Walker said his first task would be to find a replacement for Diamond.

Aviva (NYS: AV)
The insurance giant is up 1.6% in London today despite reporting a second-half loss after writing down its U.S. arm by 876 million pounds. The company reported a net loss from continuing operations of 745 million pounds for the first half of 2012,compared with a 125 million pound profit in the same period last year. Executive Chairman John McFarlane said that costs to revamp Aviva are likely to rise during the second half of the year, as the company intends to sell or exit at least 16 businesses and turn around more than 25 others.

Nokia (NYS: NOK)
The Finnish phone manufacturer is seeing yet another day of gains after announcing this week that it will sell its Qt app-tools unit to Digia as it phases out its own software creation and becomes more reliant on offerings from Microsoft. The unit was originally bought in 2008 to develop applications for Symbian and MeeGo operating systems, but Nokia has now turned to the Microsoft Windows Phone software. Nokia is up 1.3%.

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Karl Loomes does not own any share mentioned in this article. The Motley Fool owns shares of Microsoft. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Microsoft. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a bull call spread position in Microsoft. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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