October 19, 2009 / 1:00 PM / 9 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St poised for higher open on earnings hopes

* BB&T posts lower Q3 profit, sees loan stability

* Hasbro earnings top view; revs fall short

* Futures up: Dow 48 pts, S&P 500 5.4 pts, Nasdaq 8.25 pts

* For up-to-the-minute market news, click [STXNEWS/US] (Adds Gannett earnings, Spring buy, Amgen drug delay)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, Oct 19 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed to a higher open on Monday, as the outlook for corporate earnings lifted investor optimism about the potency of an economic recovery.

Hasbro Inc HAS.N added 1 percent to $29.80 in premarket after the toymaker posted higher-than-expected quarterly profit Monday, lifted by a demand for movie-related toys, although revenues fell short of the Wall Street view. For details, see [ID:nN19363695]

Newspaper publisher Gannett Co Inc (GCI.N) gained 0.6 percent to $13.08 premarket after posting third-quarter adjusted earnings that beat expectations. [ID:nN19342465]

BB&T Corp (BBT.N) slipped 2.8 percent to $27.45 premarket after the regional bank reported that third-quarter profit decreased by 56 percent, but said early indicators of problem loans were largely stable compared with the second quarter. [ID:nN18349933]

Through Oct. 16, 61 companies in the S&P 500 have reported earnings, with 79 percent of those results above analyst expectations, according to data compiled by Thomson Reuters.

“People come in, investors come in, they buy the market and they buy the market because they are anticipating a strong finish for the year,” said Peter Kenny, managing director at Knight Equity Markets in Jersey City, New Jersey.

“We are starting to see — it’s earnings, yes, but it’s also a year end play.”

S&P 500 futures SPc1 rose 5.40 points and were above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures DJc1 added 48 points, while Nasdaq futures NDc1 gained 8.25 points.

Diversified manufacturer Eaton Corp (ETN.N) said quarterly profit fell sharply from a year ago, but still topped expectations, adding that it saw early signs of recovery in its markets. [ID:nN19314996] Shares rose 5 percent to $63.50 in light trading,

Other key earnings on tap include iPhone maker Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and chipmaker Texas Instruments Inc TXN.N.

iPCS Inc IPCS.O surged 33.4 percent to $23.85 after the company agreed to be acquired by Sprint Nextel Corp (S.N) for about $831 million, including the assumption of $405 million in debt. Sprint Nextel rose 2 percent to $3.54. [ID:nWNAB0538]

Amgen Inc (AMGN.O) shed 3 percent to $59.50 after the drugmaker said U.S. health regulators delayed approval for its most important new drug, osteoporosis medicine denosumab. [ID:nN19201876]

U.S. stocks dropped on Friday after disappointing results from General Electric Co (GE.N) and Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) demonstrated the road to economic recovery will be bumpy.

Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe

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