(By Balachander) U.S. stock index futures pointed to a slightly lower open on the Wall Street after a data showed that manufacturing in the New York area unexpectedly shrank and core consumer prices rose lower than expected.
Mini Dow Industrial Average futures shed 24 points to 13,109. The Nasdaq futures slipped 3.75 points to 2,723. Standard and Poor's 500 futures lost 2.80 points to 1,398.80.
On the domestic economic front, a data showed that core consumer price inflation rose 0.1 percent in July, ending a streak of four straight 0.2 percent increases. Economists expected a gain of 0.2 percent. The headline index was little changed last month, coming in below expectations of a rise of 0.2 percent.
The New York Federal Reserve's empire state index for August slipped below zero for the ?rst time since October 2011, dropping 13 points to a negative reading of 5.9 from a positive 7.4 in July. Economists expected a reading of 6.5.
On Tuesday, U.S. stocks closed on a flat note, erasing earlier gains amid stronger-than-forecast domestic retail sales readings and encouraging growth data out of Europe.
Hot Stocks Of The Day: SPLS, ANF, TGT, DE, JDSU
In corporate news, Staples Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS) plunged 16.76 percent in premarket after the office products company reported a fall in quarterly earnings, missing market expectations, citing softer-than-expected sales trends in North America and ongoing weakness in Europe and Australia. The company also slashed its forecast for the year.
Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE:ANF) gained 4.05 percent after the apparel retailer posted better-than-expected quarterly earnings. Its second-quarter earnings halved from the year-ago period amid a drop in comparable store sales and contraction of margins and the company backed its guidance for 2012.
Target Corp. (NYSE:TGT) added 1.14 percent in premarket after the discount retail giant raised its earnings forecast following better-than-expected quarterly results. The company also guided third-quarter above Wall Street expectations.
Deere & Co. (NYSE:DE) retreated 5.53 percent in premarket after the company reduced its fiscal 2012 growth outlook following lower-than-expected quarterly earnings.
JDS Uniphase Corp. (NASDAQ:JDSU) jumped 5.81 percent in premarket after the provider of communications test products posted quarterly results that topped Wall Street expectations.
Carlyle Group LP (NASDAQ:CG) has formed a partnership with the management of Getty Images Inc. to buy the visual content provider for $3.3 billion.
European markets traded in red, with Germany's DAX down 0.52 percent to trade at 6,938.43. France's CAC40 fell 0.16 percent to 3,444.61. U.K.'s FTSE 100 declined 0.42 percent to trade at 5,839.89.
Among Asian markets, China's Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index shed 1.10 percent to finish at 2,118.94. Japan's Nikkei 225 edged 0.05 percent lower to end at 8,925.04. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index tumbled 1.18 percent to end at 20,052.29. India's BSE Sensex finished at 17,728.20, up 0.54 percent.
Ahead of the opening bell, crude oil futures lost 0.34 percent to $93.11 per barrel. Gold futures edged 0.14 percent lower to $1,600.1 per ounce.
In the currency market, the euro dropped 0.38 percent against the U.S. dollar to 1.2275 while the British pound inched up 0.03 percent to 1.5681. The dollar dipped 0.01 percent against the Japanese yen to 78.7300.