LONDON Jan 4 U.S. stock index futures pointed
to a flat open on Wall Street on Friday, with S&P 500
futures up 0.1 percent and contracts for the Dow Jones
and the Nasdaq 100 down 0.1 percent at 0840 GMT.
* European shares fell in early trade on Friday as concerns
that the U.S. Federal Reserve may end its asset-buying programme
ahead of time curbed appetite for shares in the run up to key
U.S. jobs data.
* U.S. non-farm payrolls, due at 1330 GMT, are seen rising
150,000 in December, after a 146,000 increase in the previous
month, with the unemployment rate seen unchanged month-on-month
at 7.7 percent.
* The Fed said last month it would keep interest rates near
zero until unemployment fell to at least 6.5 percent, and as
long as inflation does not rise above 2.5 percent.
* Drug maker Eli Lilly is expected to provide sales
and earnings guidance for this year, when its $5 billion-a-year
Cymbalta antidepressant will start to face cheaper generics. But
Wall Street expects company earnings to rise about 10 percent in
2013 because of sales growth from other drugs.
* Walgreen reports December same-store sales, one day
after several major U.S. retailers beat expectations of modest
sales increases in December as shoppers wrapped up holiday
* Mosaic is expected to post a sharp decline in
quarterly profit from the same period one year ago. Analysts
will be looking for an update on the fertilizer producer's
supply contracts with China and India, after Mosaic cut its
outlook in November for phosphate and potash sales, citing
* New York State's $150-billion public pension fund has sued
Qualcomm, seeking to force the chipmaker to reveal its
political spending, according to the state comptroller.
* Japan's Nikkei share average climbed to a 22-month high on
its first trading day of 2013 on Friday, as a deal in Washington
to avert the "fiscal cliff" buoyed investor risk appetite and
the weaker yen lifted exporters such as Toyota Motor Corp
* The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 21.19
points, or 0.16 percent, to 13,391.36 on Thursday. The Standard
& Poor's 500 Index shed 3.05 points, or 0.21 percent, to
1,459.37. The Nasdaq Composite Index lost 11.70 points,
or 0.38 percent, to 3,100.57.