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US stock-index futures little changed toward positive levels amid corporate earnings

Stock-Market-NewsU.S. stock-index futures remain almost unchanged, after the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rallied to new records, as investors focused their attention on the release of corporate earnings and tomorrow’s jobless data to evaluate the economy state.

S&P 500 futures expiring in December rose less than 0.1% to 1,737.2 at 7:37 a.m. in New York. The equities benchmark reached its best weekly gain since July last week as results from Google Inc. topped estimates and speculation rose that the Federal Reserve will delay cutting monetary stimulus. Contracts on the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 6 points, less than 0.1%, to 15,319 today.

“Investors will sooner rather than later start to wonder how long the celebratory mood can last,” Alastair Winter, chief economist at Daniel Stewart & Co. in London, said in e-mailed comments for Bloomberg today. “Certainly, there are fat profits available from October and, if not already booked, from the third quarter and the year-to-date.”

The Labor Department will tomorrow release the September jobs report, which was delayed from its original October 4 because of the shutdown. The government will publish the September data on consumer prices on October 30, though a report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland said the accuracy of inflation reports will be compromised for as long as seven months because of the shutdown.

In corporate news, McDonald’s may also be active. The world’s largest restaurant chain will publish its third-quarter results that analysts expect will show earnings last quarter surged to $1.51 per share from $1.43.

After the closing of US trading session, streaming-media provider Netflix Inc. is expected to post earnings of 49 cents a share in the third quarter. Netflix shares rose 1.1% ahead of the open.

Being a notable mover in pre-market trade, Bank of America Corp. sank 1.2% after the Financial Times said regulators at the Federal Housing Finance Agency are looking to hit the bank with a fine of more than $6 billion for its role in misleading mortgage authorities.

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