June 19, 2013 / 11:42 AM / 5 years ago

US STOCKS-Futures little changed as Fed statement looms

* Fed statement, news conference in focus

* Adobe shares up after results

* Futures: Dow up 16 pts, S&P off 0.6 pt, Nasdaq up 4 pts

NEW YORK, June 19 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were little changed on Wednesday following two days of gains ahead of a highly anticipated Federal Reserve statement and news conference.

* The Fed will release a policy statement at 2:00 p.m. EDT (1800 GMT), which will be followed soon after by a news conference with Chairman Ben Bernanke.

* Two days of gains this week suggest investors expect reassurances of continued economic support from the U.S. central bank. The equity market had been roiled recently by suggestions that the Fed’s asset purchases would be scaled back earlier than anticipated.

* Even as volatility has spiked in the wake of Bernanke’s comments to Congress May 22 which had triggered investors’ angst over a winding-down of quantitative easing, equity markets have mostly traded sideways. The S&P 500 is now 1 percent below its record closing high set on May 21.

* September futures for the S&P 500 fell 0.6 point and were down in terms of 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 16 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 4 points.

* Shares of Adobe Systems Inc rose 7 percent in light premarket trading a day after the maker of Photoshop and Acrobat software reported a higher-than-expected adjusted quarterly profit and said demand rose for Creative Cloud, the subscription-based version of its flagship software package.

* S&P 500 companies scheduled to report earnings on Wednesday include Jabil Circuit Inc, Micron Technology Inc and Red Hat Inc.

* Japan’s SoftBank cleared a major hurdle in its attempt to buy U.S. wireless provider Sprint Nextel, as rival bidder Dish Network declined to make a new offer after SoftBank sweetened its own bid last week. Sprint shares fell 3.3 percent to $7.08 in premarket trading.

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