April 8th, 2013

Dow Jones Futures – U.S. stock-index futures advanced as investors awaited Alcoa Inc. (AA)’s financial release to mark the beginning of the latest earnings-reporting season.

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Inc. (BCRX), the developer of anti- influenza drug Peramivir, surged 18 percent in early New York trading as China expedited the approval of the medicine. Lufkin Industries Inc., a maker of oil-well pumps, jumped 38 percent as General Electric Co. (GE) agreed to buy the company.

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index expiring in June advanced 0.4 percent to 1,551.5 at 7:24 a.m. in New York. Contracts on the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 39 points, or 0.3 percent, to 14,523. The S&P 500 fell 1 percent last week, for the biggest decline so far this year, as payrolls data missed economists’ estimates.

“Investors may be taking this opportunity selectively to buy on this dip,” Richard Hunter, head of U.K. equities at Hargreaves Lansdown Plc (HL/) in London, wrote in an e-mail. “The imminent first-quarter reporting season, which Alcoa will kick off today in the U.S., will now take on extra significance.”

Alcoa Inc., the first Dow Jones Industrial Average member to publish results each quarter, was unchanged in early New York trading. Alcoa will report an 8-cent a share profit today, according to the average of 18 analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg. That would be two cents less than the earnings it posted in the first quarters of 2010 and 2012.

BioCryst Rallies

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals Inc. surged 18 percent to $2 in early New York trading. The stock had jumped 29 percent on April 5. China’s Food and Drug Administration said it expedited the approval of Peramivir as authorities reported three more infections of the deadly H7N9 virus that has killed six people in the country since March.

Lufkin soared 38 percent to $87.97 in premarket trading in New York. General Electric, the world’s biggest provider of power-generation equipment and services, said it will acquire Lufkin for about $3.3 billion or $88.50 per share.

Chuy’s Holdings Inc. (CHUY), a restaurant-chain operator, may move after reporting first-quarter preliminary revenue of $46.7 million, exceeding analyst estimates of $45.2 million. Separately, Chuy’s Holdings said it is offering 3 million shares on behalf of holders.

- Jonathan Morgan in Frankfurt at Bloomberg.