There are a number of moving pieces influencing trading today with mixed results. US stocks are rallying this morning on better than expected jobless claims and another overnight round of earnings reports. Yesterday’s ADP payrolls were in the 200-250K sweet spot and traders appear to be expecting something similar for tomorrow’s nonfarm payrolls. Jobless claims fell despite ongoing layoffs in the oil and gas sector indicating an otherwise robust job market. European markets have been trying to figure out what to make of the ECB and Germany playing hardball with Greece over its debt renegotiation attempts. While stock indices are trading slightly lower this morning, Greece’s treasury yields touched 10% then dropped back again. This action indicates that while there may be some concern about the situation, there also appears to be some recognition among traders that extreme hardline positions are common in negotiations and leaves room for compromise. Still, negotiations could take longer and be more difficult than people may be currently expecting, with all sides vulnerable to hiccups. GBP is the top performing major currency today as the Bank of England decided not to join the parade of central bank easing seen so far this year. Its neutral stance on rates has left it along with the Fed and the RBNZ among the more hawkish central banks relative to others. Crude oil continues its seesaw trend of one day up and one day down with both Brent and WTI still swinging around in the $45.00 to $55-60 range. CAD is getting a boost from a higher oil price and a better than expected Canadian trade balance. Corporate News Prudential Financial $2.12 vs street $2.38 Yum! Brands $0.61 vs street $0.66 Economic News Economic reports released overnight and this morning include: UK interest rate decision 0.50% no change as expected UK QE decision £375B no change as expected US jobless claims 278K vs street 290K US trade balance ($46.6B) vs street ($38.0B) Canada trade balance ($0.6B) vs street ($1.1B) Germany factory orders 3.4% vs street 0.7% UK Halifax house prices 8.5% vs street 7.7% Sweden industrial production (1.6%) vs street (3.5%) Sweden industrial orders (11.4%) vs previous 1.3% Australia new home sales (1.9%) vs previous 2.2% Australia retail sales 0.2% vs street 0.3% Economic reports due later today include: 10:30 am EDT US natural gas street (120 BCF)