NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures
sharply cut losses Thursday as news of a proposed takeover
in the biotechnology sector tempered caution before data that
investors fear may show more weakness in consumer spending and
the labor market.
* Before the bell, Gilead Sciences said it had
agreed to buy CV Therapeutics for $20.00 per share.
* "In general people people are going to be encouraged by
seeing more transactions. It certainly speaks to some
confidence," said Dan Greenhous, market analyst at Miller Tabak
& Co in New York.
* S&P 500 futures fell 4.50 points and were below
fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into
account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the
contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures fell 37
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures dipped 8.75 points.
* U.S. government reports on weekly initial jobless claims
and February retail sales are due out at 8.30 a.m.
(Reporting by Ellis Mnyandu; Editing by James Dalgleish)
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