Stock index futures pointed to a slightly higher open on Wall Street on August 9, 2012, with futures for the S&P 500 up 0.02 percent, Dow Jones futures up 0.49 percent and Nasdaq 100 futures up 0.23 percent at 0907 GMT.
On Thursday, European shares inched higher after softer Chinese data kept alive talk of further central bank policy easing for tackling declining global growth. On Wednesday, Rupert Murdoch's News Corp posted a quarterly loss after taking $2.85 billion of non-cash restructuring and impairment charges that overshadowed growth at its cable networks, the company's only major bright spot.
In July, Chinese demand for automobiles slowed further from the last two months as an economic slowdown and weak consumer confidence weighed on sales.
On Wednesday, the Standard & Poor's 500 barely extended a streak of gains to a fourth day to end above 1,400 in another thinly traded session.
The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI rose 7.04 points, or 0.05 percent, to 13,175.64 at the close. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index .SPX edged up just 0.87 of a point, or 0.06 percent, to finish at 1,402.22. But the Nasdaq Composite Index .IXIC slipped 4.61 points, or 0.15 percent, to end at 3,011.25.