U.S. stock index futures point to slightly lower start
LONDON Jan 29 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed to a slightly lower open on Wall Street on Tuesday, with futures for the S&P 500 down 0.1 percent.
* Futures for the Dow Jones were flat, while contracts on the Nasdaq 100 shed 0.2 percent at 0947 GMT.
* European shares edged up to hover near two-year highs, with strong earnings reports and a brightening economic outlook lifting sentiment, although technical factors could limit gains in the near term.
* Yahoo Inc said it forecasts a modest uptick in revenue for the current year, sending shares in the Internet group 3 percent higher in after hours trade.
* The second-largest U.S. automaker, Ford, is expected to report earnings per share of $0.26, up from $0.20 one year earlier, when it unveils fourth-quarter results at 1200 GMT. Ford, which is heavily reliant on its pickup trucks for profits, is bound to benefit from an uptick in construction this year.
* Drugmaker Pfizer is expected to report EPS of $0.44, down from $0.50 in the previous year, on plunging U.S. sales of its Lipitor cholesterol drug - which is facing generic competition since November 2011 - and disappointing demand for its Prevnar vaccine against childhood infections.
* Online retailer Amazon.com reports results for the holiday quarter. They were expected to show strong sales growth, tempered by little to no profit as the world's largest Internet retailer spent heavily on its Kindle mobile gadget platform, cloud computing service and its rapidly expanding chain of shipping warehouses.
* Standard & Poor's releases its S&P Case/Shiller Home Price Index for November at 1400 GMT. Prices are expected to have continued their recovery, up 0.6 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis, pointing to a housing market that is mending.
* The Conference Board releases January consumer confidence figures at 1500 GMT, expected to have fallen to 64 from 65.1. The market will be looking for any impact from the "fiscal cliff" debate or the payroll tax increases at the beginning of the year.
* The Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee begins two days of meetings on interest rates. Traders speculated more solid U.S. growth indicators might see the Fed pull back on its aggressive easing stimulus, which has played a key role in fuelling an equity market rally since the second half of last year.
* Elon Musk has long considered Tesla Motors Inc the bold, nimble answer to the auto industry's cautious culture. Now the electric car maker's top executive has extended his help to another industrial giant: Boeing Co.
* Pentagon and industry officials said on Monday a manufacturing problem was the most likely cause of an engine failure that led to the grounding of all 25 Marine Corps versions of the Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jet 10 days ago.
* The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 14.05 points, or 0.10 percent, at 13,881.93 on Monday. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 2.78 points, or 0.18 percent, at 1,500.18. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 4.59 points, or 0.15 percent, at 3,154.30.
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