U.S. stock index futures held their losses Thursday, following the jobless claims and GDP data and amid skepticism that European leaders would overcome their differences to form a solution to tackle the ongoing debt crisis.
European leaders meet in Brussels on Thursday afternoon for the two-day summit, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel already stating they must concentrate on fundamental reforms rather than emergency proposals put forward by Italy and Spain to help alleviate their cost of borrowing on the markets. European shares were trading lower in volatile trading.
Merkel has also refused to discuss the issue of debt burden sharing unless national budget controls across the euro zone are introduced first.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said that a report that Germany could be willing to move sooner than expected to accept shared liability of euro zone debt was not true.
An auction of Italian five and 10-year bonds held ahead of the summit saw yields spike to their highest level since December 2011. Italy's benchmark 10-year borrowing costs hit 6.19 percent while the five year yield rose to 5.84 percent.
On the economic front, GDP increased at a 1.9 percent annual rate, according to the Commerce Department in its final reading, which was unchanged from its estimate last month and in line with expectations.
And weekly jobless claims fell 6,000 to a seasonally adjusted 386,000, according to the Labor Department. Economists had expected a reading of 385,000, according to a Reuters survey. The four-week moving average for new claims slipped 750 to 386,750.
“We don’t see a major improvement on the jobs front,” John Silvia, chief economist at Wells Fargo told CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “Consumer spending is really slowing down now in the second half of the year. So while first half of the year looks like a 2 percent growth, second half of the year will be more towards the 1.5 to 1.7 percent area. There will be some slowdown going into the third quarter in terms of consumer spending.”
The Supreme Court will publish its ruling on whether President Obama’s health care reforms, or parts or them, are unconstitutional. The multifaceted ruling is expected after 10:00am ET. (Read More: What's Next After Court Ruling?)
Losses from JPMorgan’s derivatives trades may reach as high as $9 billion, compared to previously reported estimates for $2 billion according to a report in the New York Times.
Separately, Citi analysts have cut second quarter earnings estimates and price targets for JPMorgan, Bank of America , Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley .
Barclays tumbled a day after an investigation found the bank had manipulated key market interest ratesover several years. British authorities warned that criminal proceedings could follow.
Wells Fargo resumed its "outperform" rating on Apple and EMC and "market perform" rating on Dell , Hewlett-Packard , IBM and NetApp .
Among earnings, Family Dollar slumped after the retailer posted a smaller-than-expected gain in earnings, hurt by price cuts in order to compete with rivals such as Dollar General and Wal-Mart .
Research In Motion , Nike and Accenture are slated to post earnings after-the-bell tonight.
And News Corp’s board is expected to formally announce it has approved a split of the company in two, separating out the film and TV businesses. Chairman and chief executive of the company Rupert Murdoch is scheduled to speak on CNBC at noon ET.
—By CNBC’s JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC)
Coming Up This Week:
THURSDAY: 7-yr note auction, farm prices; Earnings from Research In Motion, Accenture, Nike
FRIDAY: Personal income & outlays, Chicago PMI, consumer sentiment
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