* World leaders back Greece, vow to combat crisis
* Fed's Lockhart says circumstances not ripe for QE3
* Nasdaq revamps system after tech problems on Facebook
* Futures up: S&P 7.2 pts, Dow 80 pts, Nasdaq 17 pts
By Angela Moon
NEW YORK, May 21 U.S. stock index futures rose
on Monday after Wall Street posted its worst weekly loss for the
year and on assurances that world powers want debt-laden Greece
to remain in the euro zone.
On Saturday, G8 leaders stressed that their "imperative is
to promote growth and jobs" and gave verbal backing for Greece
to stay in the euro, but despite calls from the United States
for immediate moves to boost growth, no sign emerged that
Germany would soften its stance on austerity as the cure for
Europe's debt problems.
Wall Street was set for a rebound after U.S. stocks posted
their worst weekly loss in a year on Friday, after a sloppy
debut by Facebook disappointed investors. Facebook fell 2.4
percent to $37.35 in premarket trade on Monday.
"After the steep decline last week, the market seems to be
in for a technical relief rally, and hopes of less austerity in
Europe is fueling the market, at least in the short term," said
Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global
Capital in New York.
"But I don't think we have seen the bottom here. I think we
are in for a further decline."
Yahoo will be in the spotlight after news that
Chinese Internet entrepreneur Jack Ma is buying back up to half
of a 40 percent stake in his Alibaba Group from Yahoo for $7.1
billion, in a deal that moves the Chinese e-commerce leader
closer to a public listing. The stock was up 4.7 percent at
$16.15 in premarket trade.
Newly issued shares in Facebook Inc may have a hard
time in the coming week if lead underwriter Morgan Stanley stops
supporting the stock and managers lower down in the IPO book who
were hoping for an early surge decide to get out before going
The Nasdaq is planning to revamp its systems for
handling stock offerings after acknowledging that technology
problems had affected trading in millions of newly issued
Facebook shares on Friday, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The U.S. economy needs "measured" efforts to bolster growth,
but the central bank should focus on improving its
communications because circumstances do not warrant further bond
buying at this time, said Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President
Wanda Group, one of China's largest theater owners, has
agreed to buy AMC Entertainment in a deal valued at $2.6
billion, creating the world's biggest cinema operator, the
Lowe's Cos Inc, the world's second-largest home
improvement chain, reported a higher-than-expected quarterly
profit on strong spring sales. The company's
shares fell 5.2 percent to $27.00 in premarket trade.
S&P 500 futures rose 7.2 points and were above 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 futures rose 80
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 17 points.
The chief executives of Apple Inc and Samsung
Electronics Co Ltd come face to face on Monday in
court-directed mediation in the United States over a dispute in
which the iPhone maker claims the Korean firm has "slavishly"
copied some of its products.
Chinese traders have defaulted on some thermal coal
contracts following a drop in prices over the past month,
traders said on Monday, providing more evidence that a slowdown
in the world's second-largest economy is hitting the appetite
The coal defaults also come after sources at steel mills and
traders said last week that some iron ore shipments had been
postponed. China is the world's biggest consumer of iron ore,
coal and other base metals, but recent data has shown the
economy cooling more quickly than expected.