August 18, 2017 / 11:25 AM / in a year

US STOCKS-Futures flat amid growing concerns over Trump agenda

* Dow down 8 pts, S&P up 0.5 pts, Nasdaq up 15.5 pts

By Sruthi Shankar

Aug 18 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were little changed on Friday, a day after the S&P posted its biggest daily percentage loss in about three months, on mounting worries about President Donald Trump’s ability to legislate his pro-growth agenda.

* Trump’s campaign promises of tax cuts and higher infrastructure spending had helped the market rally, with the S&P climbing 13.6 percent since the Nov. 8 presidential election.

* Trump has alienated Republicans, corporate leaders and U.S. allies, while rattling markets with his comments since Saturday’s violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, which came in the aftermath of a white nationalist protest against the removal of a Confederate statue.

* Several business leaders have since resigned from his advisory councils and a White House official said plans for an infrastructure council had been dropped..

* Adding to the woes were a speculation of a possible departure of White House Economic Adviser Gary Cohn, which was later denied by the White House. * Investors flocked to less-risky assets, with gold poised for its second straight weekly gains and U.S. Treasury yields falling after a deadly attack killed at least 13 people in Barcelona on Thursday.

* Earlier in the week, minutes from the Federal Reserve’s July meeting showed officials were concerned about recent inflation readings that remain below the Fed’s 2 percent target rate, clouding the path of interest rate hikes this year.

* Dallas Fed Chief Robert Kaplan will speak at an event later in the day. Kaplan, a policymaker in the Fed’s cautious camp, said on Thursday the Fed should be “very patient and judicious” as it considers whether to raise rates.

* Economic reports on Friday include the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment survey data for August due at 10:00 a.m. ET (1400 GMT).

* Shares of Estee Lauder were up 4.76 percent in premarket trading after the cosmetics maker reported a rise in quarterly profit.

* Applied Materials was up about 6 percent after the company’s quarterly profit beat estimates, helped by strong growth in its semiconductor and display businesses.

* Foot Locker was down more than 15 percent after reporting lower-than-expected profit and sales.

* NYSE-listed shares of Infosys plunged more than 8 percent in heavy premarket trading after its chief executive, Vishal Sikka, resigned.

Futures snapshot at 7:00 a.m. ET:

* Dow e-minis were down 8 points, or 0.04 percent, with 24,879 contracts changing hands.

* S&P 500 e-minis were up 0.5 points, or 0.02 percent, with 238,417 contracts traded.

* Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 15.5 points, or 0.27 percent, on volume of 43,872 contracts. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)

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