U.S. stock index futures pointed to a flat open on Monday, with futures for the S&P 500 up 0.04 percent, Dow Jones futures down 0.03 percent and Nasdaq 100 futures up 0.1 percent at 5:27 a.m. ET.

* Earnings news was set to be a focus, with fourth-quarter figures expected from American Express , Amgen , CSX Corp , Halliburton Company , McDonald's and Texas Instruments .

* No major economic data was set for release, with the main economic focus expected later in the week.

* Investors will look to Tuesday night for President Barack Obama's second State of the Union address in which he will likely talk about boosting jobs and economic growth.

* The Federal Reserve's FOMC two-day meeting, which ends on Wednesday, will also draw significant interest. The Fed was expected to nod to brighter economic prospects without changing the course of its much-maligned bond buying.

* Fourth-quarter gross domestic product data was due Friday, with economists expecting it to show the economy expanded at a 3.6 percent pace, up from the third quarter's 2.6 percent.

* Looking at company news, Google was set to give Eric Schmidt a $100 million equity award as he hands over the chief executive officer job to co-founder Larry Page.

* Packaging and paper company RockTenn Co announced on Sunday it was to buy bigger rival Smurfit-Stone Container Corp in a deal which will triple annual revenue to more than $9 billion.

* A source familiar with the situation said on Sunday that Sara Lee Corp will this week weigh an offer from a group of private equity firms which values it at nearly $13 billion.

If successful, the deal would be among the largest leveraged buyouts since the credit crisis.

* One-time Bear Stearns investors can move ahead with a proposed securities class-action fraud case after a judge said a case against the fallen investment bank and its outside auditor, Deloitte & Touche, can go forward.

* A notice filed with the U.S. National Response Center said Exxon Mobil's 192,500 barrel per day (bpd) joint venture refinery in Chalmette, Louisiana, reported a spill of lubricating oil into the Mississippi south of New Orleans on Friday.

* European shares slipped 0.3 percent on Monday, with Dutch group Philips Electronics

dropping after lower than expected fourth-quarter profit.

The focus was also on the euro zone peripheral countries after Ireland's junior coalition party withdrew from Prime Minister Brian Cowen's government on Sunday, signaling the end of a crisis-riddled administration and hastening an election due on March 11.

* The Dow and S&P 500 rose on Friday after forecast-beating results from General Electric , considered a bellwether for the economy and corporate America.

* The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> rose 0.4 percent, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> added 0.2 percent and the Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> shed 0.6 percent.

(Reporting by Joanne Frearson; Editing by Dan Lalor)