US STOCKS-Futures lower ahead of economic data

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 01, 2016 18:20 hrs

* Futures down: Dow 11 pts, S&P 3.5 pts, Nasdaq 10 pts

By Yashaswini Swamynathan

Dec 1 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures kicked off December on a somber note ahead of a raft of data that would offer more clues on the strength of the economy.

* Oil prices were up 1 percent, building on a 9 percent gain from a day earlier after major producers decided to cut output and support prices.

* Gains in energy shares pushed the Dow and the S&P 500 to all-time highs on Wednesday, but Wall Street lost momentum due to losses in utility and technology stocks. The Dow closed slightly higher, while the S&P and the Nasdaq finished the day in negative territory.

* Economic data on tap include the ISM Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' index (PMI), which likely rose to 52.2 in November from 51.9 the previous month. The report is due at 10:00 a.m. ET.

* Investors will also get a reading on weekly jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. ET and automakers will release their monthly sales reports through the day.

* The Labor Department's report on monthly hiring data, due on Friday, is likely to play a key role in the Federal Reserve's deliberations on raising interest rates.

* Improving economic data and Donald Trump's victory in the U.S. presidential election have increased the odds of a rate hike at the Fed's final meeting of the year later this month.

* Traders currently see a 90 percent chance of an increase in rates this month, according to Thomson Reuters data.

* Bluebird Bio shares soared 22.6 percent to $74 in premarket trading after the gene-therapy developer said patients undergoing its multiple myeloma treatment showed strong benefits.

* Dollar General fell 5 percent to $73.50 after the discount retailer reported a surprise drop in third-quarter comparable sales.

* Express Inc and Guess Inc dropped 13 percent each after the apparel and accessories retailers cut their full-year profit forecasts.

Futures snapshot at 7:23 a.m. ET:

* Dow e-minis were down 11 points, or 0.06 percent, with 22,608 contracts changing hands.

* S&P 500 e-minis were down 3.5 points, or 0.16 percent, with 124,553 contracts traded.

* Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 10 points, or 0.21 percent, on volume of 19,007 contracts. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru)

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