LONDON, Nov 16 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed
to a lower open on Wall Street on Friday, with futures for the
S&P 500 off 0.3 percent, Dow Jones contracts down
0.2 percent and Nasdaq 100 futures flat at 0923 GMT.
* The Nikkei average rallied 2.2 percent on Friday
as investors bet Japan's main opposition party will win next
month's election and put more pressure on the central bank to
stimulate the ailing economy.
* But European stocks pared early gains and turned negative,
led by banking shares, as simmering worries about the euro
zone's debt crisis and U.S. public finances rattled investors.
* Democrats and Republicans dug in on their long-held
opposing positions as President Barack Obama and congressional
leaders prepared for budget and tax talks, set to begin at 1515
GMT on Friday.
* The U.S. Federal Reserve released on Thursday the economic
scenarios, including a hypothetical sharp slowdown in China,
that the biggest banks will use in the next round of stress
tests to determine how they would withstand a financial shock.
* Google Inc has held talks with satellite-TV
provider Dish Network Corp in recent weeks to partner
on a new wireless service that would rival the networks of
wireless carriers such as AT&T Inc and Verizon VZ
Wireless, the Wall Street Journal wrote on Friday, citing people
familiar with the discussions.
* Dell's third-quarter profit slid 47 percent, hurt
by lower PC sales, weaker demand from large corporations and the
shift to mobile computing, sending shares 2.3 percent lower in
* Gap Inc posted a bigger quarterly profit on
Thursday and quelled fears of a possible slowdown ahead of the
holiday season as the retailer raised its profit view for the
year, sending its shares up 3 percent after the bell.
* Sears Holdings Corp reported a
smaller-than-expected quarterly loss, but poor demand for
popular consumer electronic products took a toll on its
same-store sales, triggering a 6 percent fall in the retailer's
shares after the close.
* Hertz Global Holdings Inc won approval from U.S.
antitrust regulators for its $2.56 billion bid for smaller car
rental rival Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group DTG.N, bringing an
end to a more than two-year long takeover saga.
* The United States is targeting FedEx Corp and
United Parcel Service Inc as part of an expanding
crackdown against illegal sales of prescription painkillers, the
Wall Street Journal reported. It added the Drug Enforcement
Administration's probe investigation has gone on for years,
citing company filings, but it has gone largely unnoticed.
* The Dow Jones industrial average slipped 28.49
points, or 0.23 percent, to 12,542.46 On Thursday. The Standard
& Poor's 500 Index lost 2.16 points, or 0.16 percent, to
1,353.33. The Nasdaq Composite Index was off 9.87
points, or 0.35 percent, to 2,836.94.