PARIS, Sept 14 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed
to a higher open on Wall Street on Friday, after surging to
multi-year highs on Thursday after the Federal Reserve announced
an aggressive plan to stimulate the economy, encouraging
investors to dive back into the market.
* Futures for the S&P 500 were up 0.21 percent, Dow
Jones futures were up 0.22 percent and Nasdaq 100
futures 0.38 percent higher at 0830 GMT.
* Risk assets from shares to commodities rallied, the dollar
fell to its lowest level since May and Italian bond yields
slipped on Friday as investors reacted positively to the Federal
Reserve's stimulus plan.
* Gold rose to a six-month high, extending the previous
session's 2 percent gain, as the Fed's stimulus program could
add to the risk of inflation and strengthen bullion's appeal.
* Home Depot Inc, the world's largest home
improvement chain, will close all seven of its big box stores
and cut 850 jobs in China as the retailer changes its focus in
the Chinese market to online and specialty stores and becomes
the latest retailer to feel the chill from China's slowing
* Ford Motor Co's board of directors may name Chief
Executive Alan Mulally as non-executive chairman to keep him
involved with the second-largest U.S. automaker after he leaves
the top post, a person familiar with the matter said on
* Western Digital Corp, the world's largest
storage-drive maker, cut its current quarter revenue forecast as
demand for hard disk drives (HDD) was muted, sending its shares
down as much as 3 percent in after-hours trading.
* Bank of America Corp has agreed to settle U.S.
Department of Justice civil accusations that it violated federal
laws by discriminating against mortgage applicants on the basis
* Several private equity firms including Bain Capital are
considering a buyout offer for retailer Staples Inc,
Fortune reported on Thursday, citing unnamed sources.
* U.S. securities regulators do not plan to take any action
stemming from an investigation into whether Avon Products Inc
executives improperly shared information with analysts,
Avon said on Thursday.
* Defence equipment maker Chemring said U.S. private
equity firm Carlyle Group had been granted an extension
to the "put up or shut up" deadline to make an offer for the
* On the macro front, investors awaited a flurry of data,
including the August consumer price index, due at 1230 GMT,
August retail sales, due at 1230 GMT, as well as the Thomson
Reuters/University of Michigan September preliminary consumer
sentiment index, due at 1355 GMT. Economists expect a reading of
74.0 compared with 74.3 in the final August report.
* The Dow Jones industrial average ended up 206.51
points, or 1.55 percent, to 13,539.86 on Thursday. The Standard
& Poor's 500 Index closed up 23.43 points, or 1.63
percent, to 1,459.99. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose
41.51 points, or 1.33 percent, to 3,155.83.