US STOCKS-Futures off as investors worry about 'fiscal cliff'

Wed Nov 28, 2012 7:52am EST

* Obama to meet with CEOs from Goldman, Deloitte

* Costco to pay $7 special dividend on Dec 18

* EU approves Spain bank restructuring, opens door to aid

* Futures off: S&P 4.2 pts, Dow 30 pts, Nasdaq 6.25 pts

By Angela Moon

NEW YORK, Nov 28 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures fell on Wednesday as investors grew more concerned about the lack of progress in U.S. budget talks to avoid looming spending cuts and tax hikes, setting the S&P 500 up for a third consecutive day of decline this week.

* Chief executives from top U.S. corporations, including Goldman Sachs, Deloitte LLP, and Caterpillar Inc, will meet with President Barack Obama on Wednesday to discuss U.S. fiscal problems, the White House said.

* Obama's meeting with influential leaders from the corporate world is part of his push for Congress to extend tax cuts for middle income Americans, one flashpoint in a standoff with Congress over a series of tax hikes and spending cuts that will go into effect next year if lawmakers and the president cannot come up with a deal to stop them.

* U.S. stocks slid on Tuesday in a choppy session, losing ground in the last hour before the close after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid expressed disappointment that there has been "little progress" in dealing with the "fiscal cliff."

* S&P 500 futures were down 4.2 points and were below 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 fell 30 points, while Nasdaq 100 futures were up 6.25 points.

* Deep divisions at the Federal Reserve were on display on Tuesday, just two weeks before the U.S. central bank's next policy-setting meeting, with one top Fed official pushing for more easing, and another advocating limits. The Fed will release its Beige Book summary of regional economic conditions at 2 p.m. (1900 GMT).

* New home sales data is due at 10 a.m. Economists in a Reuters survey forecast a reading of 390,000 for October versus the previous reading of 389,000.

* U.S. retailer Costco Wholesale Corp is to pay a special dividend of $7.00, worth a total $3.0 billion to investors, it said when posting monthly same-store sales that beat forecasts.

* Microsoft Corp has sold 40 million Windows 8 licenses in the month since the launch, according to one of the new co-heads of the Windows unit, setting a faster pace than Windows 7 three years ago.

* Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc forecast quarterly and full year earnings well above analysts' expectations, helped by an expanded lineup of single-serve coffee makers and drinks, sending its shares up 22 percent in after-hours trade.

* Advanced Micro Devices Inc plans to sell and lease back its campus in Austin, Texas, to raise cash and fund its chipmaking business as it diversifies beyond the struggling PC industry into new markets.

* Nokia said on Wednesday that an arbitrator has ruled in its favour in a patent dispute with BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion over use of Nokia's patents related to wireless local access network technology.

* The European Commission gave the go ahead for Spain to overhaul its stricken nationalized banks on Wednesday and opened the door for nearly 40 billion euros in euro zone aid to be disbursed, offering hope for an end to Spain's banking crisis.