U.S. stock futures signal lower open, Yahoo eyed
* U.S. stock index futures pointed to a weaker open on Wall Street on Thursday, with futures for the S&P 500 down 0.5 percent, Dow Jones futures down 0.4 percent and Nasdaq 100 futures down 0.2 percent at 0937 GMT.
* Yahoo will be in the spotlight after a source told Reuters Blackstone Group and Bain Capital are preparing a bid for all of the company with Asian partners in a deal that could value Yahoo at about $25 billion. Yahoo's stock, traded in Frankfurt, was up 7.1 percent.
* The Labor Department releases at 1330 GMT first-time claims for jobless benefits for the week ended Nov. 26. Economists forecast a total of 390,000 new filings compared with 393,000 in the prior week.
* The Institute for Supply Management releases at 1500 GMT its November manufacturing index. Economists expect a reading of 51.5 versus 50.8 in October.
* The Commerce Department releases at 1500 GMT October construction spending. Economists forecast a 0.3 percent increase compared with a 0.2 percent rise in September.
* The Federal Reserve releases at 2130 GMT weekly money stock, liquid assets and debt measures and the weekly report on factors affecting reserves of depository institutions and the condition statement of the Federal Reserve banks.
* ICSC releases chain store sales for November versus a year ago. In October, sales were up 3.7 percent versus a year earlier.
* Kroger Co, the largest U.S. supermarket chain, will announce results.
* As cholesterol fighter Lipitor goes generic, its maker Pfizer Inc is hoping to hold onto perhaps a third of the 3 million Americans who take the biggest-selling drug of all time.
* AT&T Inc and T-Mobile USA's parent Deutsche Telekom have discussed options including forming a joint venture to pool the wireless operators' network assets if AT&T's proposed $39 billion plan to buy T-Mobile USA fails, the Wall Street Journal reported.
* European stocks were down 0.5 percent in morning trade, giving back a little of the strong gains in the previous session, as the market sought further guidance from policymakers about their plans to help end the region's debt crisis.
* Wednesday's emergency move by the U.S. Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank, and the central banks of Japan, Britain, Canada and Switzerland -- reminiscent of joint action to stabilise global markets in the 2008 financial crisis after the collapse of Lehman Brothers -- was seen as a strong signal that central banks have ample fire power to prevent the euro zone crisis from spreading.
* China's factory sector shrank in November in the face of weakening demand both at home and abroad, likely to feed worries that the global economy is on a slippery slope.
* Spain will be in focus on Thursday as the country aims to raise 2.75 billion euros to 3.75 billion euros in a bond auction, and analysts warned the sale could go like Italy's auction of three and 10-year bonds on Tuesday, which drew reasonable demand but saw yields leap to levels deemed unsustainable.
* U.S. stocks surged on Wednesday after major central banks agreed to make cheaper dollar loans for struggling European banks to prevent the euro-zone debt woes from turning into a full-blown credit crisis.
* The Dow Jones industrial average shot up 490.05 points, or 4.24 percent, to end at 12,045.68. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index jumped 51.77 points, or 4.33 percent, to 1,246.96. The Nasdaq Composite Index soared 104.83 points, or 4.17 percent, to close at 2,620.34.