LONDON, Oct 26 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed
to a lower open on Wall Street on Friday as disappointing
earnings from consumer bellwethers Apple Inc and
Amazon.com Inc dented sentiment.
* Futures for the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones
were down 0.8 percent, while contracts on the Nasdaq 100
fell 0.7 percent at 0827 GMT.
* European equity markets fell on Friday, weighed down by a
fresh batch of gloomy corporate outlooks as demand for
everything from cars to building materials is crimped by the
euro zone economic crisis.
* Japan's Nikkei share average was knocked off a four-week
high on concern that Chinese funds face heavy redemptions after
a poor quarterly performance, and as disappointing earnings from
Fanuc Ltd dragged.
* Apple Inc delivered a second straight quarter of
disappointing results and iPad sales fell well short of Wall
Street's targets, marring its record of consistently beating
* Amazon.com Inc reported its first quarterly net
loss in more than five years on Thursday as the world's largest
Internet retailer spent heavily and suffered from an economic
slowdown in Europe.
* Goodyear Tire & Rubber, the largest U.S. tire
manufacturer, is expected to report on Friday lower earnings per
share of $0.59 due to weakness in Europe. Weak demand and rising
raw material costs have hurt Goodyear in recent quarters.
* Dean Foods Co's Morningstar business has attracted
takeover interest from Michael Foods and Mexican dairy company
Grupo Lala, people familiar with the matter said, in a deal that
could be valued in the $1 billion to $1.5 billion range.
* Wal-Mart Stores Inc plans to open 100 more stores
in China and create 18,000 jobs there over the next three years,
it said on Friday, in a bid to boost its presence in China's
booming but highly competitive hypermarket sector.
* The U.S. Commerce Department releases its first estimate
of third-quarter gross domestic product at 1230 GMT. Analysts
expect a 1.9 percent advance, faster than the 1.3 percent
clocked in the second quarter but not fast enough to quickly
bring down the unemployment rate.
* Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan Surveys of
Consumers release their final October consumer sentiment index
at 1255 GMT. Economists in a Reuters survey expect a reading of
83.0 compared with 83.1 in the preliminary October report.
* Comcast, the biggest U.S. cable provider, is
expected to report a 13 cents increase to $0.46 its earnings per
share. Wall Street analysts say NBC Universal revenue could be
stronger than expected, in part due to the Olympics as well as
the network's surprising lead in prime time TV in the 18-to-49
audience, its strongest start in many years.
* Insurer Coventry Health Care, which is in the
process of selling itself to larger Aetna, is expected to report
lower quarterly profits of $0.73 per share due in part to
continued pressure on government reimbursements.
* The U.S.'s No.2 drugmaker Merck, hit by competition
for its Singulair asthma drug, is expected to report lower sales
and earnings. But the magnitude of the decline is expected to be
largely buffered by gangbuster sales growth of the company's
Januvia asthma drug, vaccines and treatments for HIV.
* The Dow Jones industrial average rose 26.34 points,
or 0.20 percent, to 13,103.68 on Thursday. The Standard & Poor's
500 Index gained 4.22 points, or 0.30 percent, to finish
at 1,412.97. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 4.42
points, or 0.15 percent, to end at 2,986.12.