Stocks (^GSPC) higher in the early going as investors weigh a plethora of market-moving headlines.
First, ECB head Mario Draghi says the central bank's massive bond-buying program is working and policymakers will continue it until inflation goals are met.
Yahoo Finance's Aaron Task notes Draghi and the ECB are playing things pretty close to the vest.
"Draghi did give his update on economic forecasts and it's unchanged for 2015, unchanged for 2016 and a slight upgrade for 2017," he says. "So Draghi is saying the program is working, things are getting better but the ECB--maybe having learned a lesson from watching the Fed miss estimates so many times--they're sticking with their forecast."
And speaking of the Fed, Janet Yellen and company give us their latest snapshot of the economy with the release of its Beige Book this afternoon. Task expects few surprises there.
"Some of the regional data we've gotten lately shows the economy is slowing," he points out. "I doubt there's going to be anything in the Beige Book that could change that dynamic or at least make a compelling case why all those numbers are wrong."
One plus for the economy--payroll processor ADP reported 201,000 private sector jobs were created last month, a bit more than economists had forecast.
Wendy's gobbles up stock
Here’s a look at some of the stocks the Yahoo Finance team will be watching for you today.
Wendy’s (WEN) shares are higher in early trading. The fast food chain announced it would buy back $1.4 billion worth of shares by the end of 2016. The company said it now expects earnings per share to grow more than 20% by 2018 as a result of the new stock repurchase plan.
Guess (GES) shares are on the move this morning. The retailer swung to a profit of $0.04 a share in the first quarter, analysts were expecting a loss of $0.05 a share. However, revenue missed estimates with sales falling more than 8% from a year earlier. The company also lowered its guidance for the current quarter, citing the strong dollar, but raised its outlook for the year.
Synchronoss Technologies (SNCR) shares are soaring after the Wall Street Journal reported that the wireless software firm is working with a financial advisor on a possible sale that could be valued at more than $2 billion. Several private equity firms have expressed interest in the company, but it's possible a deal might not happen, according to the Journal.
Google (GOOGL) shares are in focus this morning as the tech giant holds its annual shareholder meeting today; investors are being urged to withhold votes from the board's committee responsible for setting executive pay. Advisory firm ISS said that the board failed to tie stock grants to executive performance. Some shareholders are also pushing for Google to fully disclose all of its lobbying.
Pinterest, instagram move to raise revenue
Both Pinterest and Facebook's (FB) Instagram have new plans to commercialize their platforms. Pinterest is planning to provide a buy button, allowing users to directly purchase items pinned on the site. Meanwhile, Instagram is expanding its advertising efforts with targeted ads and buy links.
Did corporate pressure cause FIFA president Sepp Blatter to step down? Task hopes so.
"I would hope behind the scenes the big sponsors were saying, 'Hey dude, you gotta' step down because this is really bad for football [soccer], it's bad for your brand and it's bad for our brand,'" he explains.