PARIS, March 11 U.S. stock index futures pointed
to a lower open on Wall Street on Monday, with futures for the
S&P 500 down 0.2 percent, Dow Jones futures down
0.1 percent and Nasdaq 100 futures down 0.2 percent at
* European shares dipped in morning trade, drifting lower
from near five-year highs hit last week, as Italy's credit
downgrade and mixed macro data from China dampened investors'
appetite for risky assets.
* The dollar hovered near a 3-1/2-year high against the yen
and held an upper hand against other major currencies on Monday
in the wake of surprisingly strong growth in U.S. employment,
which added to optimism over recovery in the world's largest
* M&A noise will remain at the forefront of investors minds,
with the Times of India newspaper reporting that AT&T Inc
is considering buying a 25 percent stake in India's Reliance Jio
Infocomm Ltd, a telecommunications venture controlled by
billionaire Mukesh Ambani, for $3.5 billion.
* Merck & Co will be in the spotlight after data
released on Saturday showed unexpected serious side effects
arose in a huge study of a long-acting niacin drug aimed at
raising good HDL cholesterol, possibly adding another nail to
the coffin of niacin therapy for heart patients.
* Wall Street commodity revenues crashed last year to their
lowest on record, as tighter regulation and limited price swings
squeezed the once dominant traders of Goldman Sachs Group Inc
, JPMorgan Chase & Co and Morgan Stanley.
* On the macro front, investors awaited employment trend
index for February, due at 1400 GMT, while on the earnings
front, Urban Outfitters Inc is set to report results.
* U.S. stocks closed out a historic week with another day of
gains on Friday, as the Dow hit yet another record closing high
on a payrolls report that surpassed even the most optimistic
* The Dow Jones industrial average rose 67.58 points,
or 0.47 percent, to 14,397.07, another record closing high. The
Standard & Poor's 500 Index advanced 6.92 points, or 0.45
percent, to 1,551.18. The Nasdaq Composite Index gained
12.28 points, or 0.38 percent, to end at 3,244.37.