US STOCKS-Futures edge higher ahead of Jackson Hole meeting, data

jueves 21 de agosto de 2014 07:48 GYT

* Initial claims, Markit PMI, existing home sales due

* Jackson Hole conference to begin

* Bank of America gains before expected settlement deal

* Futures up: Dow 33 pts, S&P 3 pts, Nasdaq 4 pts

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, Aug 21 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures edged higher on Thursday, ahead of a flurry of economic data and the start of the meeting of top central bankers and economists in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

* Policymakers are due to discuss the labor markets of major economies at the Aug. 21-23 meeting, with U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen scheduled to speak Friday. Investors will peruse officials' remarks for clues on the timing of an interest rate hike.

* The S&P 500 rose for a third straight day on Wednesday, narrowly missing a record close by less than 2 points, after minutes from the Fed's July meeting led investors to believe the central bank was looking for confirmation in the labor market's recovery before raising rates.

* Investors will digest a host of economic data prior to the start of the Jackson Hole conference, with weekly initial jobless claims data due at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT). Expectations call for claims to fall to 300,000 from the 311,000 claims in the prior week.   Continuación...