U.S. stock index futures point to lower open on Wall St, Boeing in focus

LONDON Wed Jan 16, 2013 9:33am GMT

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LONDON Jan 16 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed to a lower open on Wall Street on Wednesday, with futures for the S&P 500 down 0.3 percent, Dow Jones futures off 0.2 percent and the Nasdaq 100 contract 0.1 percent lower at 0922 GMT.

* Banks will be in focus, with results due from several big names, including BNY Mellon, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase & Co.

* Of the S&P 500 companies that have reported to date, 25 percent have missed fourth-quarter earnings forecasts and 29 percent have undershot on revenues, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data.

* Shares in General Motors fell after the bell on Tuesday after the automaker said it expects operating profit to rise "modestly" this year - a comment that is expected to prompt analysts to downgrade their forecasts.

* Boeing will be in focus on concerns about the safety of its Dreamliner. Japan's two leading airlines grounded their fleets of 787s on Wednesday after one of the passenger jets made an emergency landing.

India will decide on whether to ground national carrier Air India's Dreamliner jets after the U.S. company submits a report on the aircraft's safety.

* Global growth concerns remain in the spotlight after the World Bank slashed its economic forecasts for developed nations this year.

A plunge in European car sales in December added to the gloom.

* U.S. December inflation figures are due at 1330 GMT, followed by industrial output at 1415 GMT.

* The Dow Jones industrial average added 27.57 points, or 0.20 percent, to 13,534.89 on Tuesday, while the S&P 500 gained 1.66 points, or 0.11 percent, to 1,472.34 after stronger-than-expected retail data.

Tech heavyweight Apple dragged on the Nasdaq for a third day, with the index falling 0.2 percent.

* Major European indexes edged lower on Wednesday, after recent gains took them to multi-month highs. Profit taking also pushed Japan's Nikkei benchmark to its biggest one-day drop in eight months.