March 25, 2013
(This is Mark Vickery substituting for Sheraz Mian this morning and all this week.)
Far from a certainty up to the 11th hour, Cyprus finally decided to bail out its failing banking system to the tune of 10 billion euros, or roughly $13 billion. The small Eurozone island country has thus escaped bankruptcy, which would have made it the first nation to abandon the euro as its currency.
The bailout is already being received quite well in Europe and Asia, where most market indexes are up today. U.S. futures are also solidly green in pre-trading this morning, with the S&P 500 ticking back up toward 1560.
This is the final week of Q1, as well as a holiday-shortened week with Friday as a holiday. Earnings season will begin to pick up in a couple weeks, but until then, market catalysts will mostly be relegated to news coming from abroad, such as today's Cyprus bailout story.
That said, shares of major for-profit educator Apollo Group (APOL) are up over 9% in the pre-market after a quarterly earnings beat, although enrollment at its University of Phoenix is down. Chinese solar panel manufacturer JA Solar (JASO) is down roughly 1% on its quarterly earnings miss this morning, with revenues now having fallen for the past six quarters.
Finally, speculation continues about Dell Inc. (DELL) going private -- will Blackstone (BX) offer more than $13.65 per share and bring former H-P chief Mark Hurd on board? Will Carl Icahn entice with a $15 per share bid? We'll stay tuned, assuming anyone can talk about anything besides Cyprus today.