US STOCKS-Futures point to flat open, consumer data awaited

Tue Jun 24, 2014 8:43am EDT

Related Topics

* Micron rises in premarket after results

* Vertex soars on massive volume after clinical trial

* Data on housing, consumer confidence on tap

* Dow down 12 pts, S&P down 2.5 pts, Nasdaq up 0.75 pt (Adds Vertex and Walgreen news, updates prices)

By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK, June 24 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed to a flat open on Tuesday, suggesting investors continued to search for direction following a sharp rally that took indexes to records last week.

* Equities had a quiet session on Monday, with trading volume light and moves so slight the S&P 500 had one of its narrowest intraday trading ranges ever, according to MKM Partners. That came after a six-day rally on the S&P that ended Friday, its longest streak since mid-April.

* While Wall Street's trend upward was still viewed as intact, investors looked for fresh catalysts to justify more robust gains, and recent economic data has been mixed.

* The latest economic indicators could give the market direction, with the April Case-Shiller report on home prices scheduled for release at 9:00 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT) and data on both consumer confidence and home sales due at 10:00 a.m.

* The confidence measure is seen coming in at 83.5 in June, little changed from 83 in May, while new home sales are seen rising modestly in May. This follows Monday's much stronger-than-expected report on May existing home sales. Home prices, based on the S&P/Case-Shiller composite index, are seen up 0.8 percent in April.

* S&P 500 e-mini futures fell 2.5 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 e-mini futures fell 12 points and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures rose 0.75 point.

* Micron Technology Inc late Monday reported third-quarter results and a revenue outlook that both exceeded analysts' expectations. The stock, which is up 43.7 percent this year and more than tripled in 2013, rose 1.7 percent to $31.78 in premarket trading.

* Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc soared in heavy premarket trading. The company said a combination of drugs designed to treat cystic fibrosis succeeded in improving lung function in a pair of closely watched late-stage clinical trials.

* Walgreen Co fell 2.3 percent to $72 before the bell after third-quarter results.

* Abbott Laboratories agreed to buy Russian drugmaker Veropharm for up to $495 million.

* Bloomberg reported that Apple Inc suppliers will begin producing larger versions of the iPhone in China next month. The stock rose slightly in premarket trading.

* Investors continued to eye geopolitical tensions in Iraq and Ukraine. German business sentiment weakened more than expected in June as concern grew among companies in Europe's largest economy that tensions in the regions would hurt their business. (Editing by Bernadette Baum and Nick Zieminski)

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