Dow and S&P May Open Lower

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LONDON -- Markets look likely to post early losses this morning, with futures markets at 7 a.m. EDT predicting a 0.2% opening fall for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) and a 0.21% fall for the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC) .

Today's economic data is limited to September's existing-home sales, which are due to be released at 10 a.m. EDT and are expected to show a drop of 1.5% after August's 7.8% rise. Also in the pipeline this morning is the closing statement from this week's two-day EU summit -- although further new developments are unlikely after last night's agreement that a European banking supervisor would be set up in the next year.

After Google's premature earnings release yesterday afternoon, further share price action may be likely for the search giant when markets open today, now that investors have had more time to digest the company's fall in earnings. General Electric released its quarterly results early this morning, revealing an 8.3% gain in Q3 profit thanks to strong demand in the U.S. and Asia. Earnings rose to $0.33 per share from $0.22 per share in the same quarter last year. Schlumberger also released its results early, reporting a 9% increase in net income and an 11% increase in revenue for the third quarter.

Other companies due to report today include McDonald's, Ingersoll-Rand, and Honeywell International.

European markets
European markets slipped slightly this morning but remain poised to delivered substantial weekly gains. At 7 a.m. EDT, the DAX was down 0.5%, the CAC was down 0.6%, the FTSE MIB was down 1.6%, and the IBEX was down 1.6%. In London, the FTSE 100 (INDEX: ^FTSE) was down 0.3%, with temporary-power specialist Aggreko the biggest mover, down 7.7% by 7 a.m. EDT after releasing an interim statement warning of mixed trading conditions and an increase in bad debt provisions. Lloyds Banking Group was also lower following a rating cut to "underweight" by JPMorgan Cazenove.

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett is not an Aggreko shareholder, but he did recently invest $1 billion in another FTSE 100 blue-chip brand, expanding his stake in the company to more than 5%. The business concerned is a famous British name with global expansion potential -- and you can discover the identity of the company and the price he paid in this special exclusive report. Best of all, the report is free -- so download it today while it's still available.

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The article Dow and S&P May Open Lower originally appeared on

Roland Head has no shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. 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. The Motley Fool owns shares of McDonald's and Google. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Google and McDonald's. 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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