U.S. Stock Futures Signal Lower Open After Rally

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A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange October 27, 2011.

Stock index futures pointed to a weaker open for equities Friday after strong gains in the previous session, with futures for the S&P 500, the Dow Jones and the Nasdaq 100 down 0.4 to 0.5 percent.

Chevron, the second-largest U.S. oil company, is expected to show a sharp increase in profit in its quarterly review, boosted by a $500 million gain on the sale of its Welsh refinery and British and Irish marketing assets. Its profit is expected to jump to $3.46 per share from $1.87 per share.

Merck, the No. 2 U.S. drugmaker, is likely to post a profit of 91 cents per share, up from 85 cents a year ago. Other companies announcing results included Newmont Mining, Whirlpool and Biogen.

The Commerce Department releases at 8:30 a.m. EDT September personal income and consumption data. Economists expect a 0.3 percent rise in income and a 0.6 percent increase in spending. In August, income fell 0.1 percent and spending was up 0.2 percent.

The Labor Department issues at 8:30 a.m. EDT the Employment Cost Index for Q3. Economists expect a rise of 0.6 percent versus a 0.7 percent increase in Q2.

Exxon Mobil Corp awarded two engineering contracts to build floating storage and offloading facilities at the Banyu Urip oilfield and said this will lead to full production of 165,000 barrels per day at its Cepu block in three years.

At 1355 GMT, Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers release final October consumer sentiment index. Economists expect a reading of 58.0 compared with 57.5 in the preliminary October report.

Economic Cycle Research Institute releases at 10:30 a.m. EDT its weekly index of economic activity. In the prior week the index read 120.4.

Samsung Electronics Co overtook Apple as the world's top smartphone maker in the July-September period with a 44 percent jump in shipments, and forecast strong sales in the current quarter.

Brocade Communications System Inc may be back to looking at prospective buyers, the Wall Street Journal said, citing people familiar with the matter.

Some customers are moving money away from struggling futures brokerage MF Global Holdings Ltd, according to hedge funds, rivals and analysts, though the extent of the outflows is unclear.

Infospace shares fell 9 percent in late trade on Thursday after the company announced results. However, Deckers Outdoor Corp rose 3.3 percent, Advanced Micro Devices Inc climbed 6.3 percent and Baidu Inc added 5.5 percent after results.

Japan's Nikkei average rose 1.4 percent while European shares were up 0.2 percent after strong gains in the previous session, with investors remaining positive by a deal struck by euro zone leaders to help end the bloc's two-year-old debt crisis.

President Barack Obama said on Thursday the deal struck by euro zone leaders had calmed global markets and it was now important that the countries follow through on implementation of the agreement.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 339.51 points, or 2.86 percent, at 12,208.55. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 42.59 points, or 3.43 percent, at 1,284.59. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 87.96 points, or 3.32 percent, at 2,738.63.

(Reporting by Atul Prakash; Editing by David Holmes)

 

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