U.S. stock index futures were little changed on Monday as the potential for spreading geopolitical tremors in the Middle East caused investors to exercise caution.
* The possible spread of unrest to other Arab nations could drive up oil prices and dampen growth global prospects.
* Protests to end the 30-year rule of President Hosni Mubarak continued over the weekend, heightening risk aversion for European investors already concerned by the effect their own region's sovereign debt crisis and inflation could have on growth.
* Signs of instability in the region sent stocks to their biggest one-day loss in nearly six months and prevented the Dow from notching its longest weekly winning streak since 1995 on Friday.
* Earnings season continues as Exxon Mobil Corp is set to release fourth-quarter earnings, with profits expected to rise more than 30 percent. [nN30169616]
* Other companies due to report earnings include Anadarko Petroleum Corp., Gannett, Illinois Tool Works Inc and Eastman Chemical Company.
* Economic data on tap for Monday includes personal income and spending for December and the Institute for Supply Management-New York release of the January index of regional business activity at 8:30 a.m., while the Chicago PMI for January is due out at 9:45 a.m..
* S&P 500 futures rose 1.3 points and were even with 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 3 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 5 points.
* Alpha Natural Resources said on Saturday it agreed to a $7.1 billion deal to buy Massey Energy Co, which was rocked by a deadly coal mining accident last year. [nN29144292]
* CNOOC Ltd will pay $1.3 billion in its second shale deal with America's Chesapeake Energy Corp, the latest move by China's top offshore oil producer in its aggressive drive for overseas acquisitions.
* European shares fell in early trade on Monday on concern that unrest in Egypt could spread.
* In Asia, Japan's Nikkei share average finished 1.2 percent lower and at one point hit its lowest since early December over Middle East concerns.
(Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; Editing by Kenneth Barry)