NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were losing steam and trading mixed Friday as positive Chinese manufacturing data was offset by ongoing uncertainties about the "fiscal cliff" negotiations in the U.S. and a selloff of Apple (AAPL) and United Technologies (UTX) shares.
United Technologies provided a 2013 profit outlook of between $5.85 a share and $6.15 a share and sales of between $64 billion to $65 billion; analysts are looking for earnings of $6.12 a share on revenue of $66.4 billion.
Shares were off more than 1%.President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner met Thursday night at the White House to discuss the U.S.budget, their first in-person meeting in four days. Statements from the White House and Boehner's office both described the talks as "frank," adding that the "lines of communication remain open." The HSBC December flash purchasing managers' index for China expanded to a 14-month high of 50.9, exhibiting five consecutive months of increases. A reading above 50 signifies growth. "Enthusiasm for equities continues to be tempered by the lack of progress by the White House and Congress on the fiscal cliff negotiations," said Addison Armstrong, senior director of market research at Tradition Energy. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 11 points, or 13.28 points above fair value, at 13,105. Futures for the S&P 500 were flat, or 0.20 points below fair value, at 1412. Futures for the Nasdaq were down 7.25 points, or 7.76 points below fair value, at 2639. "China's growth has a domestic edge to it, while the Japanese growth is reflecting weakness in international demand," noted Paul Donovan, global economist at UBS. Michael Lewis, global head of commodities research at Deutsche Bank, said despite the Fed's implementation of QE4, "the market remains focused on the potential adverse liquidity impact of the U.S. fiscal cliff." "Furthermore, the Fed's targeting of U.S. unemployment as a tool to gauge monetary accommodation could be taken as hawkish given the apparent decline in U.S. unemployment over the past year," added Lewis. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday that the consumer price index fell 0.3% in November, down from a 0.1% rise in October. Economists forecast a 0.2% decline, The core CPI rose 0.1%, down from a 0.2% increase the prior month. The consensus expectation was for a 0.2% increase. At 9:15 a.m., the Federal Reserve is predicted to report that industrial production rose 0.3% in November following a decline of 0.4% in October, and that capacity utilization rose to 78% from 77.8%. European markets were trading mixed as eurozone manufacturing PMI data missed expectations, Germany's December composite output PMI increased to 50.5 and Standard & Poor's slashed its outlook on the U.K.'s triple-A rating to negative from stable. The FTSE 100 in London was down 0.19% and the DAX in Germany was up 0.17%. Japan's Nikkei average closed down 0.05% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng index settled up by 0.71%. Gold for February delivery was up $1.30 at $1,698.10 an ounce at the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, while January crude oil contracts were rising 82 cents at $86.71 a barrel. The benchmark 10-year Treasury was rising 2/32, diluting the yield to 1.729%. The dollar was down 0.06%, according to the
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