NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were pointing to a higher open Friday, lifted by the previous session's late earnings news, as investors absorbed news that core consumer prices remained unchanged in August. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up by 22 points at 10,572 and were 43 points above fair value. Futures for the S&P 500 were higher by 3 points at 1125 and were 6 points above fair value, and Nasdaq futures were ahead by 7 points and were 11 points above fair value. After Thursday's closing bell, both Oracle ( ORCL) and Research In Motion ( RIMM) reported better-than-expected results. Prices at the consumer level ticked 0.3% higher in August, after a similar rise in July, the Labor Department said. Excluding volatile food and energy prices, the core rate was unchanged, coming in slightly lower than the increase of 0.1% that economists had been expecting, according to Briefing.com. In July, the core rate rose 0.1%. Market watchers are anticipating improved consumer confidence in September. According to Briefing.com, economists are looking for a reading of 70.5 when the University of Michigan releases its monthly index at 9:55 a.m. ET, compared with August's level of 68.9.
Johnson & Johnson ( JNJ), which owns nearly 18% of Dutch biotech company Crucell, is in advanced talks to acquire the rest for roughly $2.3 billion in cash. Enterprise software company Novell ( NOVL) is apparently in late-stage talks with at least two buyers -- including VMware ( VMW) -- to sell the company in separate pieces, according to a Wall Street Journal report. Late Thursday, Texas Instruments ( TXN), announced plans to increase its quarterly dividend by 8% and buy back $7.5 billion worth of its stock. In commodity markets, crude oil for October delivery was trading 10 cents higher at $74.67 a barrel, and the more actively traded November contract was up by 37 cents at $76.11 a barrel. Meanwhile, the December gold contract was higher by $3.80, trading at $1,277.60 an ounce. Meanwhile, the dollar was trading slightly higher against a basket of currencies, with the dollar index up by 0.04%. The benchmark 10-year Treasury note was up by 17/32, diluting the yield to 2.703%. Overseas, Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 1.3%, while Japan's Nikkei jumped 1.2%. The FTSE in London was adding 0.2%, while the DAX in Frankfurt was down by 0.09%. --Written by Melinda Peer in New York.