U.S. stock index futures point slightly higher

LONDON, Oct 12 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointedto a fractionally higher open on Wall Street on Friday, withfutures for the S&P 500 up 0.2 percent, and contracts onthe Dow Jones and the Nasdaq 100 up 0.1 percent at0828 GMT.

* European shares fell and Japan's Nikkei share average

slipped to a fresh two-month low on Friday on concernsthat this quarterly earnings season would be weak due tosluggish global growth.

* JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo kick offthe U.S. bank earnings season when they report third-quarterresults at 1000 GMT and 1100 GMT, respectively.

* Both banks are forecast to post an increase of roughly 20percent in their earnings per share, also thanks to a home loanrefinancing boom. JPMorgan's CEO Jamie Dimon may be askedabout reports that the bank's chief financial officer, DougBraunstein, might step down and take another position with thebank.

* Japanese wireless service provider Softbank Corpis looking to buy about 70 percent of Sprint Nextel Corpin an aggressive move that would make it a major player in theU.S. mobile market.

* The Labor Department releases the producer price index forSeptember at 1230 GMT. The pace of gains is expected to haveeased to 0.7 percent after August's 1.7 percent increase, thebiggest in three years. Underlying inflation pressures areexpected to remain contained, with wholesale prices excludingfood and energy costs notching only a 0.2 percent gain.

* A key report on U.S. consumer sentiment will be releasedat 1355 GMT and, in light of last week's unexpected drop in theunemployment rate, economists will be watching to see ifAmericans' views of the labor market also improved. The ThomsonReuters/University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers preliminaryreading for consumer sentiment is expected to dip to 78 in earlyOctober after reaching a four-month high of 78.3 in September.

* The Dow Jones industrial average fell 18.58 points,or 0.14 percent, to 13,326.39 on Thursday. The S&P 500edged up 0.28 point, or 0.02 percent, to 1,432.84. The NasdaqComposite dipped 2.37 points, or 0.08 percent, to3,049.41.

* Tech giant Apple weighed on the market as it fell2 percent to $628.10 after a U.S. appeals court overturned apreliminary injunction on the sale of Samsung'sGalaxy Nexus smartphone, dealing a blow to the iPhone maker in abattle against Google's Android mobile software.

(Reporting By Francesco Canepa. Editing by Jeremy Gaunt.)


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