US STOCKS-Wall St set to dip after retailer results; Fed minutes due

Wed Aug 20, 2014 9:07am EDT

* Lowe's, Target fall in premarket after results, forecasts

* Hertz tumbles after withdrawing forecast

* Fed minutes due at 2:00 p.m. EDT (1800 GMT)

* Futures off: Dow off 21 pts, S&P 2.75 pts, Nasdaq 3 pts (Adds Target results, updates prices)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, Aug 20 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were set for a slight dip at the open on Wednesday after weak earnings forecasts from retailers Lowe's and Target, ahead of the release of minutes from the most recent meeting of the Federal Reserve.

* Investors will peruse the Fed minutes, which will be released at 2:00 p.m. (1800 GMT), for clues on how soon the central bank plans to hike interest rates. At a two-day meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee in July, the Fed had trimmed its monthly bond-buying program by an additional $10 billion.

* An annual meeting of top central bankers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, from Thursday through Saturday will also be eyed for possible insight into the path for U.S. monetary policy.

* The benchmark S&P 500 notched its second straight day of gains on Tuesday and closed within 10 points of its all-time intraday high of 1,991.39 reached on July 24, while the Nasdaq Composite extended gains and ended the session at yet another 14-year high.

* Lowe's Companies lost 2.8 percent to $50.10 before the opening bell after the world's No. 2 home improvement products retailer cut its full-year sales forecast, though it posted better-than-expected second quarter results.

* Fellow retailer Target Corp lost 1.4 percent to $58.40 in premarket after the company's second-quarter earnings fell shy of the Wall Street estimate and the company cut its full-year outlook.

* S&P 500 e-mini futures were down 2.75 points and fair value - a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract - indicated a slightly lower open. Dow Jones industrial average e-mini futures lost 21 points and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures shed 3 points.

* But American Eagle Outfitters was a bright spot in the retail sector after second-quarter results beat expectations and it forecast third-quarter earnings that were in line with the current estimate.

* Hertz Global Holdings tumbled 12.5 percent to $27.63 in premarket trading after the rental car company withdrew its full-year financial forecast and said it expects 2014 results to be "well below" its previous guidance due to business challenges and costs.

* Amicus Therapeutics shares surged 16.6 percent to $5.33 in premarket trading after the company said its experimental drug was as effective as enzyme replacement therapies for patients with Fabry disease, a disorder that leads to the abnormal build-up of fat.

(Editing by Bernadette Baum)