US STOCKS-Futures flat ahead of EU summit, data eyed

Wed Jun 27, 2012 7:54am EDT

* In win for Apple, judge halts U.S. sales of Samsung tablet

* Analysts cautiously optimistic on Facebook

* Futures: Dow off 6 pts; S&P up 1.5 pts, Nasdaq up 0.75 pt

By Rodrigo Campos

NEW YORK, June 27 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were mostly flat on Wednesday as investors had few reasons to act ahead of another meeting of EU leaders expected to do little to solve the region's debt crisis.

The euro was also little changed against the U.S. dollar while European equities rose in choppy trade.

Few anticipate anything concrete to emerge from the two-day European Union meeting that kicks off Thursday after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said debt sharing, an idea backed by France, Italy and Spain, would not happen in her lifetime.

"This is like a slow motion car accident occurring over there and the market has certainly set this into prices," said Robert Pavlik, chief market strategist at Banyan Partners LLC in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.

"The impact of lasting and additional austerity may not have been fully priced in though," he said. "That could keep the euro zone in an extended period of recession that could continue to drag on (U.S.) earnings."

Investors awaited May durable goods orders, due at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT). Economists in a Reuters survey expect a 0.4 percent rise compared with an unchanged reading in April. Also on deck are pending home sales for May, due at 10 a.m. (1400 GMT)

"So far the trends in manufacturing are not good and I think that's a reflection of the slower growth around the world," Pavlik said.

S&P 500 futures rose 1.5 points and were little changed in terms of fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration of the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures fell 6 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 0.75 point.

Some of Wall Street's top analysts have published their research on Facebook Inc and most are cautiously optimistic. Facebook shares fell 2 percent to $32.43 in premarket trading after gaining more than 20 percent in the past two weeks.

Shares of Lennar Corp rose 3.6 percent to $28.37 premarket after the U.S. homebuilder reported a rise in new orders for the fifth straight quarter and said a slow and steady recovery was underway in the housing market.

A U.S. judge on Tuesday backed Apple's request to stop Samsung selling its Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the United States, giving the iPhone maker a significant win in the global smartphone and tablet patent wars. Apple shares edged up in light premarket trading.

Google will soon unveil a tablet co-branded with Taiwan's Asustek Computer and priced to compete with Amazon's Kindle Fire device, an Asustek executive said.

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