Wall Street set for a flat open as investors digest political news

  • The House of Representatives voted Thursday to advance a short-term spending bill, to fund the government through until mid-January
  • No earnings are expected to be published Friday

U.S. stock index futures were pointing to a flat open on Friday, as investors digest the latest in U.S. political news.

Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 3 points, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 1.5 points and 1 point, respectively.

On Thursday, Wall Street posted strong gains, ending the session on a positive note, after U.S. companies announced that they would spend the tax bill savings on higher wages and new construction.

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and a Christmas tree are illuminated in the Financial District.
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The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and a Christmas tree are illuminated in the Financial District.

On Wednesday, House Republicans voted to pass a bill which looks to cut the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent.

Meantime, the House of Representatives voted on Thursday to advance a short-term spending bill, in order to fund the U.S. government through until the middle of January.

Aside from politics, trade is expected to be slightly lighter than usual as investors get ready for the holiday season. Equities are set for a full day, however other markets such as foreign exchange and live stock options are set to close early.

Ahead of this, a whole slew of economic data were published on Friday.

First off, personal income rose 0.3 percent last month. Economists were expecting a 0.4 percent gain. Durable goods orders, meanwhile, also disappointed, rising 1.3 percent in November. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast an increase of 2 percent. This data will be then be followed by new homes sales and consumer sentiment, both due out at 10 a.m. ET. The Kansas City Fed survey will then be released at 11 a.m. ET.

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In individual stock news, pizza chain Papa John's has announced that its founder John Schnatter is set to step down as chief executive in January, some two months after he publicly criticized the NFL leadership over national anthem protests by football players. Investors will be paying close attention to the stock's moves in trade, along with other fast food chains.

No earnings are expected to be published Friday.

—CNBC's Christina Wilkie contributed to this report