LONDON Nov 23 U.S. stock index futures pointed
to a flat to higher open on Friday, with futures for the S&P 500
staying flat, the Dow Jones futures up 0.3 percent
and the Nasdaq 100 futures rising 0.3 percent.
* The U.S. market opens for a half-day business on Friday
after the Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday.
* U.S. shoppers took advantage of retailers offering a
Thursday night start to the traditional post-Thanksgiving
holiday shopping season, lining up at stores to get deals on
electronics and other items or to just see what the fuss was
* Shares of Research In Motion Ltd surged
17.3 percent in Toronto on Thursday on rising optimism around
RIM's soon-to-be-launched BlackBerry 10 devices that will vie
against Apple's iPhone and Android-based smartphones.
* The U.S. Federal Reserve's securities portfolio has not
reached a level where it would impede the central bank from
carrying on with its bond-buying programs, John Williams, the
president of the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank, told the
Wall Street Journal in an interview.
* Blackstone Group LP and China agribusiness company
New Hope Group are through to the final round of bidding for
Australia's largest poultry producer Inghams Enterprises, a deal
that could be worth as much as A$1.4 billion ($1.5 billion),
sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
* The Indian joint venture of Wal-Mart Stores Inc
has suspended its chief financial officer and other employees as
it investigates alleged violations of U.S. anti-bribery laws, a
development that could hamper India's efforts to open its
domestic supermarket sector to foreign investment.
* Pfizer Inc has cut the Canadian price of its
Viagra erectile dysfunction drug after the Supreme Court of
Canada opened the door to sales of generic versions of the drug,
the company said on Thursday.
* European shares were 0.2 percent lower on Friday
after opening higher, with investors booking profits after four
straight days of gains.
* Prospects of a deal on the European Union's long-term
budget dimmed on Friday after a fresh compromise proposal
offered concessions to France and Poland but ignored British and
German demands for deeper overall spending cuts.
* International lenders have agreed new steps to cut
Greece's debt pile further but it still has to fill a 10 billion
euro ($13 billion) gap to gain the IMF's approval for its next
tranche of aid, a senior Greek government official said on
* U.S. stocks finished modestly higher on Wednesday, with
the S&P 500 up for a fourth session, although volume was one of
the year's lowest on the day ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.
* On Wednesday, the Dow Jones industrial average
gained 48.38 points, or 0.38 percent, to end at 12,836.89. The
Standard & Poor's 500 Index added 3.22 points, or 0.23
percent, to finish at 1,391.03. The Nasdaq Composite Index
rose 9.87 points, or 0.34 percent, to close at 2,926.55.