US STOCKS-Futures climb, with earnings, data on tap

Chuck Mikolajczak
Thursday, 24 Oct 2013 | 7:16 AM ET

* China data shows improvement in manufacturing

* Weekly jobless claims, Markit manufacturing data on tap

* 47 S&P 500 companies scheduled to report earnings

* Futures up: Dow 67 pts, S&P 7.9 pts, Nasdaq 14.75 pts

NEW YORK, Oct 24 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures advanced on Thursday, indicating the S&P 500 will rebound from its first decline in the last six sessions, ahead of labor market and manufacturing data and a slew of corporate earnings.

* Economic data on China's giant manufacturing sector helped boost investor sentiment, with the preliminary flash Markit/HSBC Purchasing Managers Index showing a 50.9 reading in October, above September's final reading of 50.2 and marking a seven-month high.

* Investors will eye weekly initial jobless claims data due at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT) for signs of improvement after the recent disappointing payrolls report. Economists in a Reuters survey forecast a total of 340,000 new filings compared with 358,000 in the prior week.

* The U.S. flash Markit Manufacturing PMI for October will be released at 8:58 a.m. (1258 GMT). Economists in a Reuters survey forecast a reading of 52.5 compared with a final September level of 52.8.

* Corporate earnings will continue to pour in, with 47 S&P 500 components expected to report, including Microsoft Corp, 3M Co and Amazon.com Inc.

* S&P 500 futures rose 7.9 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 gained 67 points and Nasdaq 100 futures added 14.75 points.

* U.S. stocks fell on Wednesday as shares of heavy-equipment maker Caterpillar and semiconductor companies tumbled after they reported earnings, ending the S&P 500's four-session streak of record high finishes.

* PulteGroup Inc the No.2 U.S. homebuilder, said orders fell 17 percent in the third quarter as higher interest rates delayed home sales.

* Symantec Corp dropped 12.7 percent to $21.50 in premarket trading after the maker of Norton anti-virus software, reported lower-than-expected second-quarter revenue and forecast current-quarter results below expectations.

* According to Thomson Reuters data through Wednesday morning, of the 160 companies in the S&P 500 that have reported earnings, 66.3 percent have topped Wall Street expectations, above the 63 percent beat rate since 1994 and roughly in line with the 66 percent rate over the past four quarters.

* On a revenue basis, 53.8 percent of reporting companies have beaten analysts' expectations, below the 61 percent beat rate since 2002 but above the 49 percent rate for the past four quarters.

* Miners led a rebound in European shares, driven by better-than-expected manufacturing data from China, the world's largest consumer of raw materials.

* Chinese shares slipped in volatile trade as a further spike in China's money-market rates tempered the effect of a survey showing a pick-up in manufacturing.