(By Balachander) U.S. stock-index futures pointed to a modestly lower opening on the Wall Street ahead of a meeting between European officials over a debt-reduction package for Greece.
Mini Dow Industrial Average futures dropped 43 points to 12,918. The Nasdaq futures shed 5 points to 2,629.25. Standard and Poor's 500 futures lost 5.50 points to 1,399.80.
There are no major domestic economic reports due on Monday and retailers may be in focus after the holiday shopping weekend.
The National Retail Federation (NRF) reported that shoppers who visited retail stores over Black Friday weekend grew 9.3 percent from last year. The average holiday shopper spent $423 this weekend, up from $398 last year. NRF estimates total spending at $59.1 billion.
Online holiday spending to date in 2012 grew 17 percent amid aggressive retailer promotions, according to a report from COMSCORE Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR).
Eurozone finance ministers are due to meet in Brussels for another round of talks on Greece, with reports indicating a tentative approval of the next round. The European officials failed to reach an agreement over Greece aid in two meetings this month.of aid to the debt-stricken country.
On a holiday-shortened trading day on Friday, U.S. stocks ended sharply higher as some positive global reports weighed on the sentiment and the American holiday shopping season kicked off.
Over the coming week, a speech by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, the Fed's Beige Book, a set of housing data, the weekly jobless claims data, consumer confidence index and monthly personal income and spending data are keenly awaited.
Hot Stocks Of The Day: RIMM, YHOO, KCG, GFI
In corporate news, Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO) added 1.78 percent in premarket.Goldman Sachs (GS) added the Internet company to its conviction buy list.
Research In Motion Ltd. (NASDAQ: RIMM) rose 2.49 percent in premarket. CIBC World Markets Inc. upgraded the stock to "Speculative Sector Outperformer."
Knight Capital Group Inc. (NYSE: KCG) surged 11.65 percent in premarket. The financial services company expects to receive takeover proposals as early as this week, Bloomberg reported quoting a person with direct knowledge of the matter.
Gold Fields Ltd (NYSE: GFI) advanced 1.33 percent in premarket after the South African gold miner posted its results for the quarter ended September. Net earnings for the September quarter fell to US$171 million from US$198 million in the prior quarter and US$293 million in the same period of last yea.
Shanda Games Ltd. (NASDAQ: GAME) and Thor Industries Inc. (NYSE: THO) are due to post their quarterly numbers after the markets close.
European markets traded in red, with Germany's DAX down 0.34 percent to trade at 7,284.51. France's CAC40 dropped 0.85 percent to trade at 3,498.94. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 lost 0.62 percent to trade at 5,783.18.
Among Asian markets, China's Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index declined 0.49 percent to finish at 2,017.46. Japan's Nikkei 225 added 0.24 percent to finish at 9,388.94. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 0.24 percent to end at 21,861.81. India's BSE Sensex ended at 18,537.01, up 0.16 percent.
Commodity & Currency Scan
Ahead of the opening bell, crude oil futures slipped 0.54 percent to $87.80 per barrel. Gold futures dipped 0.09 percent to $1,749.80 per ounce.
In the currency market, the euro dropped 0.05 percent against the U.S. dollar to 1.2965, and the British pound edged 0.13 percent lower to 1.6009. The dollar dropped 0.33 percent against the Japanese yen to 82.1200.