US STOCKS-Wall St set to dip at open after Fed Bullard's remarks
* Bullard says stimulus could wind down from October
* Trading may get volatile due to "quadruple witching"
* Futures: Dow off 19 pts; S&P off 1.5 pts; Nasdaq up 3.25
NEW YORK, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set for a slightly lower open on Friday following comments by a senior Federal Reserve official who said that the U.S. central bank's stimulus efforts could be scaled back from as early as October.
In an interview on Bloomberg TV, St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President James Bullard said a wind-down of the Fed's $85-billion monthly bond purchase program from October was possible. On Wednesday, the Fed surprised markets and investors with its decision to delay scaling back stimulus from September.
Bullard's interview remarks come on a day when several senior Federal Reserve officials, including himself, are scheduled to speak. Investors are hoping their remarks will shed light on the Fed's unexpected decision to keep its stimulus efforts intact, and on how much longer the Fed plans to continue stimulus.
Trading could be volatile as Friday marks the "quadruple witching," when stock index futures, stock index options, stock options and single stock futures all expire on the same day. Trading increases as investors replace or repurchase existing contracts.
Helped by a rally that took the Dow and the S&P 500 to record highs on Wednesday following the Fed's decision, both indexes are now on track for a third consecutive week of gains.
So far, the benchmark S&P 500 index is up 2 percent and the Dow is up 1.7 percent for the week.
"I think the Fed speakers are basically going to give mixed messages. It's been like that in the past and we may see some surprise headlines from some speakers," said Joe Saluzzi, co-manager of trading at Themis Trading in Chatham, New Jersey.
Meanwhile, Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan surprised markets in his maiden policy review on Friday by raising interest rates to ward off rising inflation, while scaling back some of the emergency measures put in place to support the ailing rupee.
"We need to look at the move by India, see if that cycles through. We know that anything the Fed decides cycles through emerging markets, but let's see if it back cycles here," Saluzzi said.
In company news, Apple Inc shares rose 1.4 percent to $478.51 in premarket trading as its newest smartphone models hit stores across the world. This includes a simultaneous launch for the first time in the crucial Chinese market.
Lines have already formed outside Apple stores in New York and San Francisco, and the company, as usual, will open its doors Friday to much cheering from fans.
S&P 500 futures fell 1.5 points and were slightly below 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 fell 19 points, while Nasdaq 100 futures added 3.25 points.
Bullard will speak on monetary policy to the New York Association for Business Economics at 12:55 p.m. EDT (1655 GMT).
Just ahead of that, Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank President Esther George delivers a speech on the economy to the Shadow Open Market Committee in New York at 12:30 p.m.
Federal Reserve Governor Daniel Tarullo speaks on macroprudential regulation in New Haven, Connecticut at 12:40 p.m. EDT.
Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Narayana Kocherlakota talks at a conference on risk in options prices in New York at 1:45 p.m. EDT.
In Washington, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives expected to vote for a bill to gut President Barack Obama's healthcare law while temporarily funding other government programs, ignoring a warning from the White House that the measure would be vetoed.
In Europe, shares were steady on Friday, hovering around five-year highs hit in the previous session, with the expiry of September derivatives contracts keeping trade brisk though choppy.
The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was down 0.04 percent at 1,265.47 points after hitting its highest level since mid-2008 in the previous session. It was on track for a third straight week of gains.