* Equities come off biggest decline since June
* Weekly jobless claims on tap, seen rising in week
* Qualcomm rises after results, Whole Foods falls
* Dow up 44 pts, S&P up 2.3 pt, Nasdaq down 1.75 pts
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, Nov 8 U.S. stock index futures were
little changed on Thursday, indicating investors remained
cautious about the market ahead of impending data and in the
wake of steep declines in the previous session.
* Equities slumped more than 2 percent Wednesday as investor
focus returned to the looming "fiscal cliff" debate and Europe's
economic troubles. It was the first trading session since
President Barack Obama won re-election, as generally
* Wednesday's retreat marked the biggest daily drop for the
S&P 500 since June 1; the index dropped 2.4 percent and closed
below the key 1,400 level for the first time since Aug. 30. The
Dow ended under 13,000 for the first time since Aug. 2.
* Some investors may seek bargains at these levels, but
sustained upside could be hard to come by until some resolution
is reached on the U.S. fiscal cliff. Investors worry that if no
deal is agreed over some $600 billion in spending cuts and tax
increases due to kick in early next year, it could derail the
country's economic recovery.
* Domestic growth has been sluggish, with Europe's debt
crisis and slowing growth weighing on corporate profits. The
latest read on the labor market will come Thursday with the
release of weekly jobless claims, due at 8:30 a.m. ET (1330 GMT)
* Claims are seen rising by 7,000 in the latest week to
370,000. The September International Trade number is also on
tap, with analysts expecting a trade deficit of $45.0 billion,
versus a $44.22 billion deficit in August.
* S&P 500 futures rose 2.3 point and were about even
with 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 added 44
points and Nasdaq 100 futures fell 1.75 point.
* Despite Wednesday's sell-off, all three major U.S. stock
indexes were still up for the year. As of Wednesday's close, the
Dow has appreciated 5.9 percent in 2012 so far, the S&P 500 has
gained 10.9 percent and the Nasdaq is up 12.8 percent.
* In company news, Qualcomm Inc late Wednesday
reported quarterly revenue that beat expectations, sending
shares higher in premarket.
* Whole Foods Market Inc reported earnings that met
expectations but said a recent storm that devastated the U.S.
northeast had dragged on sales this quarter.
* Walt Disney Co, Dean Foods and Nvidia Corp
are all scheduled to report results on Thursday.