U.S. stock index futures rose on Thursday ahead of data expected to show the economy grew in the third quarter, while jobless numbers and a round of corporate earnings were also on tap.

Futures were also boosted after big consumer products maker Procter & Gamble Co reported quarterly profits and sales that beat estimates.

The government will release its first estimate of third-quarter gross domestic product at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT). GDP, a gauge of all goods and services produced within U.S. borders, is expected to have grown at an annual rate of 3.3 percent in the quarter, according to 77 analysts polled by Reuters.

On Wednesday, Goldman Sachs cut its GDP forecast to 2.7 percent from 3.0 percent.

Investors will also take in weekly initial jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. The earnings calendar includes results from Exxon Mobil Corp and Kellogg Co .

Overseas oil majors Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Eni SpA warned of a slow recovery on weak energy demand and operational challenges, as their profits slumped. Shell will cut 5,000 jobs to tackle the tough economic environment.

After the bell on Wednesday, shares of software maker Symantec Corp rose 6.7 percent after its profit beat estimates on growth in its consumer anti-virus business.

Health insurer Aetna Inc reported higher net income Thursday morning, but projected that full-year profit would come in at the low end of its previous view.

S&P 500 futures rose 5.4 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 32 points, while Nasdaq futures added 5.5 points.

Stocks sold off broadly on Wednesday, sending the benchmark S&P 500 lower for a fourth straight day after weak data on new home sales.

As of Wednesday's close, it has dropped 5.04 percent from its post-March closing peak reached on October 19. The broad index wiped out its gains for October and is now on the verge of snapping a string of seven months of gains.

To date, the S&P 500 has jumped 54.1 percent from a 12-year closing low on March 9.

(Reporting by Leah Schnurr; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)