NEW YORK Aug 22 U.S. stock index futures rose
on Thursday after upbeat data from Europe and China more than
offset lingering uncertainty over the Federal Reserve's asset
purchases stimulus program.
* The Dow industrials fell Wednesday for a sixth straight
day and the S&P 500 closed below its 50-day moving average for a
fourth session after minutes from the Fed's July meeting gave
few clues on when and by how much the U.S. central bank will
start reducing its $85 billion a month in bond purchases.
* Bulls were encouraged, however, after business surveys
showed better-than-expected growth in the euro zone and a
rebound in China's vast manufacturing sector, evidence that the
world economy is on the mend. The U.S. flash Markit
Manufacturing PMI for August is due at 8:58 a.m.
* Other data on Thursday's schedule includes first-time
claims for jobless benefits for the latest week at 8:30 a.m.
(1230 GMT), the Federal Housing finance Agency's Home Price
Index for June at 9 a.m. (1300 GMT) and July leading economic
indicators at 10 a.m. (1400 GMT).
* S&P 500 futures rose 7 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 rose 42
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 18 points.
* Shares of Hewlett-Packard dropped 7 percent in
premarket trading a day after the company reported a decline in
Enterprise Group revenue, the company's second-largest division
and a critical component of CEO Meg Whitman's plan to transform
* Abercrombie & Fitch shares tumbled nearly 18
percent premarket after the apparel retailer said quarterly
comparable sales fell a worse-than-expected 10 percent.
* Sears Holdings, which operates its eponymous
department stores and the Kmart discount chain, reported a much
bigger-than-expected quarterly loss and its shares fell 4
percent in premarket trading.