US STOCKS-Futures point to modest losses on Wall St after GDP data

Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:06am EST

* S&P 500 closed at record Thursday, on track for strong Feb

* Fourth-quarter GDP rises 2.4 pct, below estimate

* Citigroup lowers 2013 profit as a result of fraud

* Salesforce.com raises revenue outlook, shares up

* Futures down: Dow 6 pts, S&P 2 pts, Nasdaq 2 pts

By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK, Feb 28 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed to a slightly lower open on Wall Street Friday, with the S&P 500 coming off a record close and after the U.S. government slashed its estimate for fourth-quarter economic growth.

* GDP was estimated to have grown at an annual rate of 2.4 percent in the quarter, the Commerce Department said, down sharply from its estimate last month of 3.2 percent growth, and 4.1 percent in the third quarter. Analysts had expected growth of 2.5 percent.

* The report was the latest in a string of indicators to come in below forecasts, which many analysts have pinned to a severe winter rather than worsening fundamentals. Stocks rose on Thursday after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen indicated support for this theory.

* The S&P 500 closed barely in positive territory for the year on Thursday, though it still ended at a record above a level that has served as resistance this week. All three major indexes are set to end February and the week with gains, and the Nasdaq is on track for its fourth straight weekly rise.

* Also set for release Friday are the February Chicago Purchasing Managers Index and a final February reading on consumer sentiment from the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers. The PMI report, due at 9:45 a.m. EST, is seen falling to 57 from 59.6 last month, while sentiment is expected to be flat.

* Citigroup Inc said it would lower its previously announced 2013 net income from $13.9 billion to $13.7 billion due to recently discovered fraud at a unit in Mexico. Shares fell 0.7 percent to $48.36 in premarket trading.

* S&P 500 futures fell 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 6 points and Nasdaq 100 futures lost 2 points.

* For the month, the Dow is up 3.7 percent, the S&P is up 4 percent and the Nasdaq is up 5.2 percent. For the week, the Dow is up 1.1 percent, the S&P is up 1 percent and the Nasdaq is up 1.3 percent.

* Salesforce.com Inc late Thursday raised its full-year revenue forecast and said it was looking to improve its adjusted operating margin. Shares rose 1 percent to $66.88 before the bell.

* Gap Inc reported earnings Thursday that beat expectations, though the apparel retailer expected unfavorable currency exchange rates to hurt full-year profit. Shares were slightly lower in light premarket trading.

* Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc late Thursday rejected Men's Wearhouse Inc's revised takeover offer, calling it inadequate, though it was willing to talk about a higher bid. Shares of Jos. A. Bank rose 4.1 percent to $62.75 while Men's Wearhouse was up 4.1 percent at $52.49.

* Toy maker Mattel Inc agreed to buy Canada's Mega Brands Inc for about $460 million.

* In testimony before the Senate Banking Committee, Yellen said it would take a "significant change" to the economy's prospects for the central bank to put plans to reduce its bond-buying program on hold.

* On Friday, Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher said the central bank should halt its stimulus as soon as circumstances make it possible.