* 3M gains premarket after profit rises
* Netflix slides on forecast
* Futures up: Dow 33 pts, S&P 4 pts, Nasdaq 14.5 pts
By Edward Krudy
NEW YORK, April 24 U.S. stock index futures
crept higher on Tuesday after sharp losses in the previous
session but continued concerns about Europe's debt crisis could
mean gains will be slight.
The Dutch state successfully sold two bonds at an auction a
day after the government collapsed in a crisis over budget cuts,
but investors demanded a slightly higher risk premium for the
long-dated bond as euro zone yields have edged higher.
"There is this persistent worry over the euro zone now,"
said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global
Capital in New York. "It appears that the markets are trying to
force once again the EU to take a more aggressive approach in
terms of growth."
Results from Apple Inc after the close may be a
stabilizing factor for the Nasdaq during the day. The results
will be dissected after a share swoon raised concerns a
gravity-defying rally was over. Apple is down 10 percent from
its closing peak this year.
S&P 500 futures rose 4 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 33
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 14.5 points.
The S&P 500 should hold near-term support at 1,340 during
the current pullback before extending its rally again, according
to Brown Brothers Harriman analysts. The index, which held at
1,340 during a pullback in early March, closed Monday at
3M Co's profit rose 4 percent, helped by a strong
performance in its industrial and transportation business and
growth in the Americas. The stock was up 3.2 percent to $87.13
in light premarket trade.
Diversified U.S. manufacturer United Technologies Corp's
earnings topped expectations, helped by
better-than-expected demand for residential heating and cooling
systems in North America.
One-time market darling Netflix Inc projected
slower subscriber growth this quarter for its key U.S.
video-streaming service, sending shares down 15.4 percent to
$86.16 in premarket trade.
A key European index rose 0.6 percent early Tuesday
following the last session's losses, but gains could be fragile
as fears over the euro zone debt situation persisted, with
Spanish and Dutch debt auctions under the spotlight.
Texas Instruments Inc forecast second-quarter
revenue growth above Wall Street estimates, signaling the end of
a prolonged inventory-related decline in demand. Shares were up
3.6 percent to $33.05 early Tuesday.
Facebook Inc reported its first quarter-to-quarter revenue
slide in at least two years, a sign the social network's
sizzling growth may be cooling as it prepares to go public.
On the macro front, investors awaited the S&P/Case-Shiller
Home Price Index for February, due at 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT), and
April consumer confidence and new home sales for March, both due
at 10 a.m. (1400 GMT). The Conference Board's Consumer
Confidence measure should soften to 69.7 from 70.2, according to
Diversified manufacturer Crane Co posted higher
profit, helped by growth at its aerospace and electronics and
fluid handling segments.
Illumina Inc, which has fended off a hostile
takeover bid from Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding AG,
reported higher-than-expected profit late Monday and maintained
its full-year forecast.