* Citigroup falls in premarket, Fed rejects capital plan
* GDP data on tap, along with jobless claims and home sales
* BofA to pay $9.3 bln to settle mortgage bond claims
* Futures up: Dow 6 pts, S&P 4.8 pts, Nasdaq 7.25 pts
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, March 27 U.S. stock index futures
edged slightly higher on Thursday as investors continued to
digest the latest out of the crisis in Ukraine and as they
looked ahead to data on U.S. fourth-quarter economic growth.
* Equities have been volatile this week, driven by any sign
of easing or increasing tension in the biggest conflict between
Russia and the United States since the Cold War. While the
market was supported by several economic indicators that pointed
to improving conditions, investors used the uncertainty as an
opportunity to take profits in some of the market's biggest
outperformers, especially in the technology and biotech sectors.
* On Wednesday, the U.S. and the European Union agreed to
work together to prepare possible tougher economic sanctions in
response to Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea territory,
including on the energy sector. While Western leaders earlier
agreed to hold off on new sanctions unless Moscow takes further
destabilizing actions in the region, investors are concerned
about the potential fallout to prolonged conflict.
* Citigroup Inc slumped 4.7 percent to $47.80 in
premarket trading a day after the Federal Reserve rejected the
bank's plans to buy back $6.4 billion of shares and boost
dividends, saying the bank wasn't sufficiently prepared to
handle a potential financial crisis. A source close to the
matter told Reuters that Citi officials had not expected the
* Four other banks also had their plans rejected, including
Zions Bancorp and the U.S. units of HSBC
, RBS and Santander.
* Investors are looking ahead to a final read on gross
domestic product, which is seen showing a 2.7 percent expansion
in the fourth quarter, up from the previous read of 2.4 percent.
The GDP data is due at 8:30 a.m. (1230 GMT), as are weekly
jobless claims, which are expected to have risen by 5,000 to
325,000 in the latest week.
* At 10 a.m., pending home sales data will be released.
Sales are seen as having held steady in February.
* S&P 500 futures rose 4.8 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 added 6
points and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 7.25 points.
* In Ukraine, the country won a $27-billion international
financial lifeline from the International Monetary Fund, rushed
through in the wake of Russia's annexation of Crimea, as
Moscow's economy minister spoke of the cost of military action
in its former Soviet neighbors. The credit is in return for
tough economic reforms that will unlock further aid from the
European Union, the United States and other lenders over two
* In company news, Bank of America agreed to pay
$9.3 billion to settle claims that it sold Fannie Mae
and Freddie Mac faulty mortgage bonds, helping the
bank to end one of the largest legal headaches it still faced
from the financial crisis.
* Yum Brands Inc, which has heavy exposure to China,
said its KFC chain is planning an overhaul of its China menu and
launching a publicity drive as it struggles to emerge from the
shadow of a food safety scare in 2012.
* Cloud-based payroll processor TriNet Group Inc
said it priced its initial public offering at $16 per share,
valuing the company at about $1.09 billion.
* The stock will begin trading on Thursday, a day after King
Digital Entertainment Plc slumped in its trading debut.
Shares of King rose 2.5 percent to $19.45 in premarket trading.
(Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)