* Indexes set for second straight week of gains
* Investors await data on manufacturing, consumer sentiment
* Monster Beverage rallies, Coca-Cola takes stake
* Futures up: Dow 50 pts, S&P 5.25 pts, Nasdaq 14.5 pts
By Ryan Vlastelica
NEW YORK, Aug 15 U.S. stock index futures were
higher on Friday, with major indexes on track for a second week
of gains, as traders bet there would be no immediate escalation
in the tense situations in Ukraine or Iraq.
* Recent trading has taken its cue from news overseas, with
investors concerned about the potential impact of any
exacerbation of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, or in
violence in Iraq.
* Ukrainian border guards crossed the frontier to inspect a
huge Russian aid convoy, which some had speculated could be a
cover for a military invasion. The inspection comes a day after
Russian President Vladimir Putin struck a softer tone in
comments regarding Ukraine.
* In Iraq, Nuri al-Maliki stepped down as prime minister,
paving the way for a new coalition that world and regional
powers hope will be able to quash a Sunni Islamist insurgency
that threatens Baghdad.
* Investors awaited August data on both manufacturing and
consumer sentiment. The New York Fed's read on manufacturing,
due at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT), is seen falling to 20 from
25.6, while the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Surveys
of Consumers - due at 9:55 a.m. - is seen rising to 82.5 from
* S&P 500 e-mini futures rose 5.25 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 e-mini futures
added 50 points and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures
gained 14.5 points.
* For the week, the Dow is up 1 percent, the S&P is up 1.2
percent and the Nasdaq is up 1.9 percent.
* The benchmark S&P index is 1.7 percent off a closing
record hit late July. In a sign of the market's long-term
strength, the index has marked more than 1,000 days since its
last correction, which Wall Street defines as a drop of 10
percent from the most recent high.
* Applied Materials Inc late Thursday reported
third-quarter earnings that beat expectations, boosted by demand
for DRAM chips. It also forecast adjusted current-quarter
profits that were largely above estimates.
* Monster Beverage Corp jumped 21 percent to $87 in
premarket trading after Coca-Cola Co said it was buying a
16.7 percent stake in the company for $2.15 billion.
* JD.com Inc fell 6.7 percent to $28 in premarket
trading after the company reported a wider second-quarter loss
than a year earlier, even as revenue jumped 64 percent.
* Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc
disclosed a new $366 million stake in Charter Communications Inc
, part of a flurry of changes in its stock investments
during the second quarter. It also trimmed its stake in DirecTV
and is no longer reporting any stake in Starz.
(Editing by Bernadette Baum)