US STOCKS-Wall St to open flat after ADP; factory orders due

Wed Apr 2, 2014 9:05am EDT

* ADP employment slightly below estimate, prior month revised up

* Factory orders data on tap

* MannKind shares soar as diabetes drug gets FDA backing

* Futures up: Dow 11 pts, S&P 0.5 pt, Nasdaq up 3.75 pts (Adds ADP data, updates prices)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, April 2 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were set for a flat open on Wednesday, indicating the S&P 500 will hold near its record high reached in the prior session, after data on the labor market was slightly below expectations.

* U.S. private employers added 191,000 workers in March, slightly below the 195,000 forecast, while gains in the prior month were revised higher to 178,000 from the previously reported 139,000, signaling the dampening effects of harsh winter weather on job growth may be fading.

* Later in the session at 10:00 a.m. (1400 GMT), the factory orders report for February is due. Investors will be looking for signs of growth after the previous month's decline of 0.7 percent was attributed to a harsh winter. Analysts polled expect an increase of 1.2 percent.

* Shares of MannKind Corp nearly doubled in price, soaring 88.3 percent to $7.57 in premarket trading Wednesday. U.S. health advisers Tuesday recommended approval of the company's inhaled diabetes drug.

* S&P 500 e-mini futures gained 0.5 point and were roughly even with 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 added 11 points and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 3.75 points.

* The S&P 500 closed at a record high Tuesday after data on factory activity indicated economic growth was gaining traction.

* Fertilizer company Agrium Inc said a late start to spring and railroad-related backlogs will result in first-quarter earnings per share just above breakeven.

* Apollo Education Group Inc lost 3.7 percent to $33.85 before the opening bell. It reported lower-than-expected quarterly revenue and said it had received a subpoena from the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Inspector General seeking information about the operations of the Northeast region of the University of Phoenix.

* DFC Global Corp gained 7.2 percent to $9.63 in premarket. The pawn and payday lender said it would be acquired by private equity firm Lone Star Funds for about $1.3 billion, including debt. (Editing by Bernadette Baum and Nick Zieminski)

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