U.S. stock index futures were higher Friday, struggling to recover from a string of recent declines, and ahead of Facebook's widely-anticipated trading debut later this morning.
Still, all three major indexes are on track to posting their worst weekly drop this year.
Facebook is expected to raise up to $18.4 billion in its IPO and become the first U.S. company to be worth more than $100billion at its debut. The social-network giant priced its offering at $38 a share and is expected to begin trading under the ticker symbol "FB" on Nasdaq around 11am ET.
European shares eased off their lowswith Spanish stocks turning higher following a report of a ban on short-selling on Spain's banks. This comes after Moody's cut the long-term debt and deposit ratings of 16 Spanish banks, including the euro zone's largest, Banco Santander.
Adding to jitters earlier in the session, Fitch slashed Greece's to CCC from B-minus, due to the heightened risk that the country might have to leave the euro zone.
Meanwhile, French President Francois Hollande will meet President Obama ahead of a meeting of G8 leaders this weekendand a NATO summit that immediately follows.
Ann rallied after the parent company of Ann Taylor posted better-than-expected earnings.
Also among earnings, Foot Locker surged after the athletic footwear store topped quarterly results, thanks to improved gross margins. And smaller rival Brown Shoe
Salesforce.com jumped after the cloud-computing company boosted its full-year outlook and topped Wall Street earnings expectations. At least five brokerages raised their price traget on the company.
Meanwhile, Autodesk declined sharply after the design-software maker
General Electric said it aims to double the number of joint ventures it has in China from the current 28 in roughly five years. The minority shareholder of NBCUniversal is also working with the government of Myanmar on possible infrastructure projects, its vice-chairman said on Friday, a day after the United States said it had suspended sanctions barring U.S. investment in the poor Southeast Asian country.
—By CNBC’s JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC)
Coming Up This Week:
FRIDAY: Facebook begins trading, JCPenney shareholders mtg, G8 summit begins
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