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Rate hike fears still lingering; Apple watched

Wall Street focusing on rate hike prospects

U.S. stock index futures indicated a softer open on Monday, as investors remained jittery following Friday's better-than-expected jobs report, which indicated an interest rate hike could come sooner rather than later.

Investors now see a June rate rise as more likely after February's nonfarm jobs report showed a gain of 295,000, above expectations of 240,000 in February, down from 257,000 in January.

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The unemployment rate fell to 5.5 percent, while hourly wages ticked up 0.1 percent, below consensus and off the surprise 0.5 percent gain in January.

Apple will also be in focus Monday as it holds its first major event of the year, where it is set to formally unveil the price and final features of its watch at a meeting in San Francisco which kicks off at 1 p.m. ET.

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The coming week looks set to be quieter for key economic releases than of late, with no major releases due Monday.

The JOLTS report is due Tuesday along with wholesale trade data followed by the monthly Federal budget statement on Wednesday. Arguably the most noteworthy release will be February retail sales figures on Thursday.

Earnings due after the bell Monday include Urban Outfitters, Casey's General, United Natural Foods.

In Europe, equities were lower in on Monday amid speculation that Friday's better-than-expected U.S. jobs report will lead the Fed to hike rates soon.

The European Central Bank is launching its 1 trillion euro ($1.1 trillion) bond-buying program on Monday and euro zone finance ministers will also meet to discuss Greece's reform plans.