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US stock futures rise ahead of data


LONDON, Dec 29 (Reuters): US stock futures rose Thursday, indicating an opening rise on Wall Street, with Chicago PMI and jobless data to be eyed later after bullish consumer confidence figures helped to boost stocks in the previous session.
In corporate news, Britain's Hilton Group said discussions to sell its hotels to its US sister company Hilton Hotels Corporation were progressing well, amid talk that a deal could be unveiled later Thursday.
By 1040 GMT, US stock futures were showing gains around 0.1 per cent for the three main indexes, with Japan's Nikkei and Europe's FTSEurofirst 300 index hitting multi-year highs and offering support.
Volume is expected to be lower than normal with many investors away because of the Christmas and New Year holidays. No S&P 500 companies are expected to report earnings.
US stocks edged higher Wednesday after a jump in crude oil prices pushed up Exxon Mobil Corp. and the energy sector.
The Dow Jones industrial average was up 18.49 points, or 0.17 per cent, to end at 10,796.26. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 1.63 points, or 0.13 per cent, at 1,258.17.
The technology-laced Nasdaq Composite Index was up 2.05 points, or 0.09 per cent, at 2,228.94.
US February crude futures, however, slipped slightly to $59.58 a barrel after surging $1.66 the previous day on expectations of a sharp draw in US crude and distillate stockpiles in data due later Thursday.