Published December 07, 2012
NEW YORK – The stock index futures dipped on Friday as investors were cautious before the November U.S. jobs report, which was expected to show the impact of Hurricane Sandy, the superstorm that battered the Northeast.
Non-farm payrolls, due at 8:30 a.m., are forecast to have risen by 93,000 jobs after gaining 171,000 in October, according to a Reuters survey. The unemployment rate is seen holding steady at 7.9 percent.
Sandy, which caused loss of life, widespread damage and power outages, likely put a dent in jobs growth in November, a interrupting a trend of modestly rising payrolls.
"I think this (data) will be a non-event for the market since everyone already expects to see the impact of the storm," said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global Capital.
"But even disregarding the weather factor, you have to take into consideration that we are looking at a job market that is not expanding but just remaining status quo. There are still uncertainties out there."
Also to be released Friday is the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index, at 9:55 a.m. Economists surveyed by Reuters expect a preliminary December reading of 82.4, down from 82.7 a month earlier.
S&P 500 futures fell 3.5 points and were below 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 fell 10 points and Nasdaq 100 futures dropped 2.50 points.
European shares fell Friday after Germany's central bank slashed its growth forecasts and as investors booked profits on concerns U.S. jobs data may disappoint.
The Bundesbank lowered its outlook for the euro zone's largest economy less than 24 hours after the European Central Bank slashed its own forecasts for the region, darkening prospects for European corporate profits next year.
Amarin Corp shares fell 18.5 percent to $9.74 in premarket trading after the bio-pharmaceutical company raised $100 million in financing to help it launch its heart drug, Vascepa, but disappointed investors, who had hoped for a sale or partnership.
Netflix Inc may be in focus. The company said Thursday securities regulators warned they may bring civil action against the firm and its chief executive for violating public disclosure rules with a Facebook post. The case raises questions about how public companies communicate on social media.
Gun maker Smith & Wesson posted revenue that beat Wall Street estimates on continued demand for its pistols and sporting rifles. The company also raised its full-year profit outlook.
U.S. stocks closed modestly higher in thin trading Thursday as a rebound in shares of Apple lifted technology shares.
(Reporting by Angela Moon; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Kenneth Barry)