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US STOCKS-Futures edge up as focus shifts to Fed

Source : REUTERS
Last Updated: Wed, Mar 20, 2013 11:50 hrs

* Fed seen sticking to stimulus as Cyprus rekindles global risks

* Cyprus leaders make efforts to avert crisis after rejecting EU bailout

* FOMC to issue statement, Bernanke news conference on tap

* Futures up: S&P 5.6 pts; Dow 41 pts; Nasdaq 15 pts

By Angela Moon

NEW YORK, March 20 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures rose on Wednesday as the focus shifted from concerns about Cyprus's financial health to the statement from the Federal Reserve's policy committee and news conference by Chairman Ben Bernanke later in the day.

* The Federal Reserve looks set to sustain its $85 billion monthly bond-buying stimulus despite improving U.S. economic data as a new flare-up in the euro zone crisis following Cyprus's troubles reminds officials of a risky global environment.

* Cypriot leaders held crisis talks on Wednesday to avert financial meltdown after the Cypriot parliament rejected the terms of a European Union bailout, throwing efforts to rescue the latest casualty of the euro zone debt crisis into disarray.

* JPMorgan Chase & Co has reached a $546 million settlement with the trustee liquidating the failed broker-dealer unit of MF Global Holdings, a court filing showed

* A key U.S. bank regulator has called for improvement in the management of JPMorgan Chase & Co on concerns linked to the multi-billion dollar "London Whale" trading loss last year, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing knowledgeable sources.

* European Union lawmakers are expected to agree on Wednesday to bar bankers in Europe from getting bonuses bigger than their salary, introducing the first cap of its kind globally.

* S&P 500 futures added 5.6 points and were above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures added 41 points and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 15 points.

* Roche Holding and a buyout group comprising KKR & Co LP and Hellman & Friedman LLC have joined the bidding for Life Technologies Corp, a genetic testing company coveted for its advanced diagnostics and steady cash flow, according to people familiar with the matter.

* FedEx Corp reported a 31 percent drop in quarterly profit due to restructuring costs and weakness in its air freight express business.

* General Mills, the U.S. maker of Yoplait yogurt, Cheerios cereal and Progresso soups, reported a higher quarterly profit on Wednesday, helped by the recent acquisitions of Yoki Alimentos in Brazil and Yoplait Canada.




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