* Payrolls report due at 8:30 a.m. EST (1330 GMT)
* Alcoa shares slide after results
* Futures up: Dow 61 pts, S&P 8 pts, Nasdaq 21 pts
NEW YORK, Jan 10 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures climbed in low volume on Friday as traders awaited a key report on employment in the world's largest economy.
The payrolls report, due at 8:30 a.m. EST (1330 GMT), is expected to show the U.S. economy created 196,000 jobs in December, slightly lower than 203,000 in November; the unemployment rate is seen steady at 7 percent.
Wall Street analysts may be looking for a higher number as some forecasts were raised recently and the revised numbers were not included in the current mean estimate.
"I expect the number to be strong and an initial surge to 1,850 on the S&P," said Ken Polcari, director of the NYSE floor division at O'Neil Securities in New York.
He sees the benchmark drifting lower after an initial run "until next week, when earnings really kick in."
S&P 500 futures rose 8 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 rose 61 points and Nasdaq 100 futures added 21 points.
Alcoa reported a massive quarterly loss on Thursday after recent declines in aluminum prices; its shares fell 6.4 percent in premarket trading.
Sears Holdings Corp's shares fell 12.7 percent in light premarket trading a day after the retailer reported steep declines in comparable-store sales at its Kmart and U.S. namesake chain for the crucial holiday season.
Shares of trucking company YRC Worldwide fell 20 percent in premarket trading a day after sliding 16 percent after workers represented by the Teamsters union rejected a contract extension that the company proposed, putting a plan to restructure its debt in jeopardy.