Futures Remain Lower After Flat CPI Report

U.S. stock index futures held losses Wednesday, following a recent rally and after a report that showed consumer price index remained unchanged last month.

On the economic front, consumer prices were flatfor a second-straight month in July, according to the Labor Department, giving the Federal Reserve room for further monetary stimulus. Economists had expected the index to tick up 0.2 percent, according to a Reuters poll.

A gauge of manufacturing in New York state unexpectedly contracted in August to minus 5.85 for the first time since October 2011, according to the New York Federal Reserve. The index was at 7.39 in July. Economists had expected a reading of 6.5.

On the upside, industrial output climbed 0.6 in July, according to the Federal Reserve, matching expectations. But figures for June were revised down to a 0.1 percent gain, after an initial estimate of a 0.4 percent increase.

The National Association of Home Builders will release its monthly market sentiment index at 10 a.m. on Wednesday. Economists polled by Briefing.com expect the index to stand at 35 in August, flat on the previous month.

Investor sentiment was boosted on Tuesday after both France and Germany avoided a contraction in the second quarter. But overall, euro zone GDP shrank by 0.2 percent, sustaining market hopes of further stimulus measures by the European Central Bank.

Among earnings, Target posted flat earnings but boosted its full-year forecast, thanks to more customers shopping at its expanded food sections.

Deere tumbled after the agricultural equipment maker missed earnings expectations, hurt by weak sales in China, India and other emerging markets.

Abercrombie & Fitch jumped after the teen retailer posted earnings that topped the tepid guidance it provided two weeks ago, but the company warned that sales would be tepid throughout the back-to-school and holiday seasons. Meanwhile, the company announced it was boosting its stock buyback authorization to just over a quarter of its outstanding shares.

Staples dropped almost 15 percent after the office-supply retailer missed quarterly results and cut its outlook for the year.

Cisco , Applied Materials and Limited Brands are expected to report after the closing bell.

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

Coming Up This Week:

WEDNESDAY: Industrial production housing market index, oil inventories, Fed's Kocherlakota speaks, credit card default rates reported, Facebook lock-up expiration, Forest Labs shareholders mtg; Earnings from Cisco, Applied Materials, Limited Brands
THURSDAY: Housing starts, jobless claims, Philadelphia Fed survey, e-commerce retail sales, Fed's Kocherlakota speaks; Earnings from Wal-Mart, Dollar Tree, Sears, Ross Stores, Aeropostale, Gap
FRIDAY: Consumer sentiment, leading indicators; Earnings from Ann, JM Smuckers, Foot Locker

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