Futures Drift Lower as Earnings Flow Eases


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U.S. stock-index futures edged lower on Friday as the pace of major earnings releases slowed down and traders awaited a reading American consumer sentiment.

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Today's Markets

As of 7:55 a.m. ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 45 points to 15439, S&P 500 futures dipped 6 points to 1678 and Nasdaq 100 futures slumped 6.8 points to 3043.

After a deluge of earnings this week, there were fewer corporate reports out on Friday. Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN) posted a surprise quarterly loss after the bell Thursday, sending shares of the online retail giant skidding lower.

Meanwhile, Newell Rubbermaid (NYSE:NWL), Tyco International (NYSE:TYC) and Stanley Black & Decker (NYSE:SWK) both reported better-than-expected adjusted quarterly profits.

On the economic front, traders will get a reading on consumer sentiment at 9:55 a.m. ET. The Reuters/University of Michigan gauge is forecast to have inched higher to 84 from 83.9 earlier in July. Analysts said consumers are still weighed down by greater payroll taxes and still-sluggish job growth.

Elsewhere, oil prices came under pressure. The benchmark U.S. contract sold off by $1.09, or 1%, to $104.39 a barrel. Wholesale New York Harbor gasoline rose 0.11% to $3.02 a gallon. In metals, gold fell $2.80, or 0.21%, to $1,327 a troy ounce.

Foreign Markets

The Euro Stoxx 50 rose 0.24% to 2746, the English FTSE 100 dipped 0.19% to 6575 and the German DAX fell 0.53% to 8255.

In Asia, the Japanese Nikkei 225 plunged 3% to 14129 and the Chines Hang Seng ticked up 0.31% to 21969.

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