Futures Fall More on Weak GDP Report
U.S. stock index futures pointed to a lower open on Friday amid an economy that showed growth grew but at a slower than expected pace in the first quarter.
The Department of Commerce said gross domestic product increased just 2.5 percent for the first three months, lower than expectations for at least 3.0 percent.
Futures, already pricing in a lower open, slipped lower following the report.
In the long run it may not matter, though, to a market hooked on the $85 billion a month in liquidity the Federal Reserve is providing through asset purchases.
"GDP has historically been one of the economic releases with the largest impact on bond and equity markets. However, since the start of the crisis most economic data have had a much larger market impact, while the effect of GDP surprises has faded," Goldman economists said in a note.
Elsewhere, the market got another sign that the housing sector is improving.
Builder D.R. Horton reported earnings of 32 cents a share, nearly double analyst estimates of 19 cents, enough to push shares 5.5 percent higher in premarket trading.
Tyco shares also got a lift, rising 1.7 percent on earnings of 42 cents a share, three cents better than estimates.
The other U.S. macroeconomic release due on Friday is the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment survey for April due at 9.55 a.m. Analysts polled by Reuters expect the index to rise to 73.2, from 72.3 last month.
(Read More: Global Slowdown Powers US Higher)
Friday will be a comparatively quiet day for earnings after Thursday's blitz, with Chevron the biggest company reporting before the start of U.S. trade. The Dow component is forecast to post earnings per share of $3.03 on revenue of $67.7 billion, versus earnings of $3.27 on revenue of $60.7 billion a year previously.
Other companies reporting early on Friday include Lazard and VF Corp.
Fifty-nine S&P 500 companies reported first quarter results on Thursday, with only 40 percent of them beating revenue estimates, against 75 percent who beat earnings estimates.