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U.S. Stock Futures Drop as S&P Heads for Best Month Since 1974

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U.S. Stock Futures Drop as S&P Heads for Best Month
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S. Photographer: Jin Lee/Bloomberg

Oct. 31 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. stock futures fell, following a fourth straight weekly advance that left the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index poised for the biggest monthly rally since 1974.

Futures on the S&P 500 expiring in December fell 0.5 percent to 1,274.70 at 9:15 a.m. Tokyo time. The benchmark measure for U.S. stocks advanced 3.8 percent last week and has climbed 14 percent this month.

Stocks gained last week after the European rescue fund was boosted to 1 trillion euros ($1.4 trillion) and investors agreed to a voluntary writedown of 50 percent on Greek debt. The S&P 500 had fallen five consecutive months, driven lower by concern the debt crisis would curb global growth, before starting to rebound on Oct. 3. The stock index recovered as better-than-estimated U.S. reports pushed the Citigroup Economic Surprise Index above zero for the first time since April.

Equities have also climbed this month after the U.S. economy expanded in the third quarter at the fastest pace in a year, as gains in consumer spending and business investment helped support a recovery on the brink of faltering. Separate data showed that consumer confidence unexpectedly rose in October, while fewer Americans filed for unemployment assistance last week.

To contact the reporter on this story: Joanna Ossinger in New York at jossinger@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nick Baker at nbaker7@bloomberg.net

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