* Morgan Stanley cuts global GDP forecast for 2011, 2012
* Jobless claims, CPI, other data on tap
* Futures off: Dow 161 pts, S&P 20.3 pts, Nasdaq 42.25 pts
* For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
NEW YORK, Aug 18 U.S. stock index futures sank
on Thursday as a gloomy forecast on global growth and
continuing worries about the European debt crisis shook up
investors ahead of data on jobless claims and consumer prices.
* Traders held on to the view that European policymakers
were not doing enough to tackle the euro zone's debt crisis.
European blue chips .FTEU3 were down 2.6 percent, with banks
.SX7P among the biggest losers. For details, see
* Sectors closely linked to growth, like miners and
construction, were also hit hard, though the decline was
broad-based. [.EU] [MKTS/GLOB]
* Concern about the outlook for the global economy was
underscored by a Morgan Stanley note cutting its 2011 and 2012
global gross domestic product estimates. It cut its 2011 global
GDP forecast to 3.9 percent from 4.2 percent, and its 2012 view
to 3.8 percent from 4.5 percent. [ID:nL3E7JI1LM]
* S&P 500 futures SPc1 fell 20.3 points and were sharply
below fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking
into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration
of the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures DJc1
lost 161 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures NDc1 dropped 42.25
* Investors braced for a raft of economic data, including
weekly jobless claims, the consumer price index (CPI), existing
home sales and the Philadelphia Fed's business activity index.
* Data on first-time applications for unemployment
insurance was due at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT). Economists
forecast a total of 400,000 filings, compared with 395,000 in
the prior week.
* July's CPI, also due at 8:30 a.m., was seen rising 0.2
percent, compared with a drop of 0.2 percent in June.
Excluding food and energy items, CPI is expected to be up by
0.2 percent, compared with a June rise of 0.3 percent.
* Hewlett-Packard Co (HPQ.N), Gap Inc (GPS.N) and Sears
Holdings Corp (SHLD.O) were due to report quarterly results.
* Technology shares fell on Wednesday after Dell Inc's
DELL.O disappointing sales outlook fanned worries that weak
economic growth will hurt earnings in the third quarter.
(Reporting by Rodrigo Campos; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)