LONDON Feb 13 U.S. stock index futures pointed
to a slightly higher open on Wall Street on Wednesday, with
futures for the S&P 500, the Dow Jones and the
Nasdaq 100 up 0.1-0.2 percent at 0958 GMT.
* European shares were slightly lower, although they
remained near the top of a six-day trading range. French bank
Societe Generale sank 3.7 percent after it unveiled a
bigger-than-expected quarterly loss.
* U.S. President Barack Obama said in his State of the Union
speech on Tuesday he backs higher taxes for the wealthy and a
$50 billion spending plan to create jobs by rebuilding degraded
roads and bridges.
* The U.S. Commerce Dept. releases U.S. retail sales data at
1330 GMT. It was expected to show a 0.1 percent rise in January,
slowing from a 0.5 percent increase in December as consumers
eyed smaller paychecks on the back of a recent tax increase.
* Business inventories data for December, due at 1500 GMT,
are expected to show a rise of 0.3 percent, a repeat of the
* Comcast Corp clinched full control of NBC
Universal for $16.7 billion on Tuesday, the latest in a series
of deals that have taken the cable operator from humble roots in
Tupelo, Mississippi, to Manhattan's iconic Rockerfeller Center.
* The group is due to unveil fourth-quarter results before
the market open, with earnings per share seen at $0.53 from
$0.47 one year earlier.
* Networking equipment maker, Cisco Systems, is
expected to report a $0.01 increase in its quarterly earnings
per share, with corporate North America and parts of Europe
showing signs of improvement. The results are due after the
* Chip-maker Nvidia is also among companies due to
report quarterly results.
* Clearwire Corp, the wireless service provider
that both Sprint Nextel S.N and Dish Network DISH.O want to buy,
said on Tuesday that it would need Sprint financing to keep
afloat up to the end of the year.
* Asset manager Legg Mason Inc is preparing to name
its interim head, Joseph Sullivan, as its permanent chief
executive, two people familiar with the matter said, as the
company turns to a sales chief to stop an outflow of funds.
* BlackRock Inc named Morgan Stanley MS.N banker and
long-time financial advisor Gary Shedlin as its next chief
financial officer, to succeed Ann Marie Petach.
* Yahoo Inc Chief Executive Marissa Mayer said the
company's search partnership with Microsoft Corp was
not delivering the market share gains or the revenue boost that
* The Dow Jones industrial average closed 47.46
points higher, or 0.34 percent, at 14,018.70 on Tuesday. The
Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 2.42 points, or 0.16
percent, at 1,519.43. The Nasdaq Composite Index was
down 5.51 points, or 0.17 percent, at 3,186.49.