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Futures Drift Lower After Jobless Claims Data

U.S stock index futures added to losses Thursday, following a tepid weekly jobless claims report and amid ongoing worries over the global economy.

Weekly jobless claims edged down 3,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 382,000, according to the Labor Department. But the four-week moving average rose 2,000 to 377,750, the fifth-straight weekly increase, hitting the highest level since June.

Manufacturing logged its weakest quarter in three years, according to financial information firm Markit's U.S. "flash" manufacturing PMI index. The index stood at 51.5 in September, unchanged from August. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

The Philadelphia Fed index, which measures changes in business growth, will be released at 10 a.m. Economists polled by Reuters forecast the decline in new orders slowed in September to -4.0, up from -7.1 in August.

The Conference Board will issue its leading economic indicators index for August at 10 a.m. Economists polled by Reuters predicted a 0.1 percent drop, compared with a 0.4 percent rise in July.

Manufacturing in China contracted for an 11th-straight month in September, according to a private sector survey of factory managers.

European shares fell in after disappointing results from business activity surveys in the euro zone. The September Composite Flash PMI came in at 45.9, a drop from 46.3 in August. On the other hand, Spain held a successful bond auction of 3- and 10-year bonds, which helped limit declines in the euro .

UBS downgraded Morgan Stanley , Goldman Sachs and Citigroup to "neutral" from "buy."

Among earnings, ConAgra Foods rallied after the packaged-food maker reported higher-than-expected earningsand boosted its full-year forecast.

Bed Bath & Beyond slumped after the home-merchandise retailer missed earnings expectations and posted same-store sales growth that slowed.

Oracle will report after the closing bell.

Norfolk Southern tumbled after the railroad company lowered its third-quarter earnings outlook, hurt by weaker shipments of coal and merchandise as well as lower fuel-surcharge revenue.

By CNBC’s JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC)

Coming Up This Week:

THURSDAY: Philadelphia Fed survey, leading indicators, Fed's Kocherlakota speaks; Earnings from Oracle
FRIDAY: Quadruple witching, Fed's Lockhart speaks, iPhone 5 shipping date

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