U.S stock index futures were slightly lower Wednesday, a day after major indexes logged their worst one-day performance in September, amid ongoing European worries and ahead of a housing report.
“Everyone’s concerned right now—you want to have a strong finish to the quarter, but all of a sudden, you have a few people on the field falling back and you don’t want to be the only one running,” said Joe Greco of Meridian Equity Partners.
The U.S. Commerce Department will issue home sales data for August at 10 a.m. New York time, measuring sales of new, single-family houses. Economists polled by Briefing.com forecast sales rose by 380,000 in August. In July, sales rose 3.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 372,000.
Housing data in the previous session surprised to the upside, with the S&P/Case Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan areas showing house prices edged higher for the sixth consecutive month in July. In addition, the Federal Housing Finance Agency's monthly home price index gained for the seventh straight month in July.
Stocks closed at session lows Tuesday, with the S&P 500 logging its worst day in three months, amid mounting fears over Spain and ongoing worries over Caterpillar's weak outlook.
European shares fell with investors concerned about Spain’s continued reluctance to request a bailout, and by austerity strikes in the country which turned violent on Tuesday night. Meanwhile in Greece, two of the largest public and private unions are preparing to hold a 24-hour anti-austerity strike on Wednesday.
Yahoo edged higher after the Internet company named Ken Goldman as its new CFO, who will succeed Tim Morse on October 22.
Weekly mortgage applications gained last weekas interest rates fell to record lows in the wake of the Fed's QE3, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
The Treasury is set to auction $35 billion in 5-year notes, with the results available shortly after 1pm ET.
—By CNBC’s JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC)
Coming Up This Week:
WEDNESDAY: New home sales, oil inventories, 5-yr note auction
THURSDAY: Durable goods orders, GDP, jobless claims, pending home sales, 7-yr note auction, farm prices; Earnings from Discover Financial, Nike, Accenture, Research In Motion, Micron
FRIDAY: Personal income & outlays, Chicago PMI, consumer sentiment; Earnings from Walgreens
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