* Dow and S&P 500 coming off record closing highs
* AT&T in talks to buy DirecTV, sources say
* April retail sales up 0.1 pct, less than expected
* Futures up: Dow 33 pts, S&P 0.7 pt, Nasdaq 3.75 pts
(Updates with economic data)
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, May 13 U.S. stock index futures
pointed to a flat open on Tuesday as investors found few reasons
to keep pushing shares higher with major indexes coming off
record closes and economic data painting a mixed picture of the
Retail sales rose 0.1 percent in April, less than expected,
though March's read was revised upward. Separately, April import
prices fell 0.4 percent while export prices dropped 1 percent.
Analysts were expecting both to have risen 0.3 percent.
Market participants were also watching merger activity.
Late Monday, sources told Reuters that AT&T Inc was in
active talks to buy DirecTV, and that it may complete a
deal in the next few weeks that could be worth close to $50
billion. Shares of DirecTV rose 3.2 percent to $89.98 in
premarket trading while AT&T lost 7 cents to $36.50.
Separately, Pfizer suggested it could raise its
proposed $106 billion offer if AstraZeneca engaged in
talks, as its boss was grilled by UK lawmakers on his commitment
to British research spending and jobs. U.S. shares of Astra
rose 2.1 percent to $79.53 before the bell.
S&P 500 futures rose 0.7 point 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 33
points and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 3.75 points.
Wall Street rallied on Monday, with the S&P climbing 1
percent and the Nasdaq adding nearly 2 percent on the back of
outperformance in the Internet and biotech space. The Russell
2000 index of small-cap stocks climbed 2.4 percent, its
biggest daily percentage gain since early March.
Gains this year have come on improving signs of domestic
growth, though traders continue to worry about the pace of
economic expansion as well as tensions between Ukraine and
Russia, which many fear could escalate into further violence.
In the latest on that front, Russia said new European Union
sanctions would hinder efforts to defuse the situation, urging
the West to persuade Kiev to hold discussions on the country's
future structure before a May 25 presidential election.
China's economic activity showed across-the-board weakness
in April, with economic indicators on investment and consumption
missing expectations. The data sparked new calls for Beijing to
ease policies to shore up growth.
(Editing by Bernadette Baum)