* Futures lifted by rosy Chinese manufacturing data
* 'Fiscal cliff' still preoccupies investors
* CPI, industrial production data on tap
* Futures up: S&P 2 pts, Dow 32 pts, Nasdaq 1 pts
By Leah Schnurr
NEW YORK, Dec 14 U.S. stock index futures rose
on Friday, pointing to a modest rebound for Wall Street after
Thursday's retreat, though investors remained concerned about a
lack of progress by politicians in ongoing fiscal negotiations.
Economic data out of China showed that manufacturing in the
world's second-largest economy grew at its fastest pace in 14
months in December. That indicated China's economy was on the
mend, encouraging news for its key trading partners such as the
However, in Europe, the euro zone's manufacturing and
services sectors showed only small signs of improvement and
remained in contraction territory.
"If we assume we're going to have a continuation of a
shallow recession in the euro zone, the global economy can
actually increase in terms of GDP with a pick up in the pace of
the Chinese economy," said Art Hogan, managing director of
Lazard Capital Markets in New York.
"The bad news is, in large part, we've seen the market
ignore relatively good news in the economic data stream as we
focus on the fiscal cliff."
President Barack Obama and House of Representatives Speaker
John Boehner held a "frank" meeting Thursday to try to break an
impasse in negotiations over the "fiscal cliff," tax hikes and
spending cuts set to kick in early in 2013.
Frustration has mounted over the lack of progress in the
discussions, with market participants' worries reflected in a
0.6 percent drop in the S&P 500 on Thursday. Investors are
concerned that going over the cliff could tip the economy back
into recession. While a deal is expected to be reached
eventually, a drawn-out debate - like the one seen over 2011's
debt ceiling - can erode confidence.
"I think the market is convinced, due to the fact that we
haven't seen much of a pullback, that some (fiscal) compromise
will happen before the end of the year," said Hogan.
Worries over the outcome of the talks ended the S&P 500's
six-day winning streak on Thursday, but the index has performed
well over the past month. On Wednesday, the S&P hit its highest
intraday level since late October.
S&P 500 futures rose 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 gained 32
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 1 point.
The consumer price index for November is due at 8:30 a.m. ET
(1330 GMT), while industrial production will be released at 9:15
a.m. ET (1415 GMT).
Shares of Adobe Systems were up 5.8 percent at
$37.59 in premarket trading after the company said it expected
profit and earnings to grow from 2013 onwards.
Sprint Nextel Corp's $2.1 billion offer to buy out
Clearwire Corp appeared to be running into trouble on
Thursday, as some shareholders said they wanted more money,
while Softbank Corp set a cap on how much Sprint could
Clearwire shed 1.6 percent to $3.11 in light premarket
Apple's iPhone 5 will be released in China on
Friday but its longer-term hopes may depend on new technology
being tested by China's top telecoms carrier.
Shares of Apple were down 1.7 percent at $520.50 in premarket