Futures on major U.S. stock indices point to flat opening on Wednesday after government data showed that US economic activity grew at a 2.6 percent annual rate in the third quarter.
Futures on the S&P 500 are up 0.01 percent, futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average are up 0.01 percent and Nasdaq100 futures are down 0.11 percent.
At 8:30 a.m. EDT, the Commerce Department reported that real Gross Domestic Product, the broadest measure of economic activity, rose at an annual rate of 2.6 percent in the third quarter of 2010, slightly higher than the 2.5 percent rate projected last month and against analyst’s estimation of 2.7 percent. In the second quarter, the economy grew at a 1.7 percent annual rate.
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) is due to report the sales of previously occupied homes after markets open. Economists are forecasting that existing home sales in November may rise to 4.75 million against 4.43 million in October.
On the corporate front, Nike shares plunged 5.48 percent to $87.24 in the pre-market trading hours despite better-than-expected quarterly earnings as CEO Mark Parker warned of margin pressure in the quarters ahead as input costs rise.
Walgreen’s first-quarter net income rose to $580 million, or $0.62 per share, up from $489 million or $0.49 per share in the same quarter a year earlier. Sales rose 6 percent to $17.3 billion.
On Tuesday, US stocks rose moderately, boosted by some M&A activity and an easing of hostilities in Korea, with the Dow Jones index reaching a 28-month high and the Nasdaq at a three-year high, albeit in light pre-holiday trading.
The euro advanced 0.21 percent to 1.3128 against the dollar and the yen gained 0.30 percent against the greenback.
Crude oil futures advanced 0.26 percent to $90.05/barrel ahead of inventory data and gold futures rose 0.06 percent.
European stock markets are currently trading higher with FTSE 100 up by 24.66 points, DAX30 up by 5.27 points and CAC 40 up by 0.81 points.