US STOCKS-Futures lower as hopes of monetary easing fade
* Futures down: Dow 15 pts, S&P 2.75 pts, Nasdaq 7.75 pts
By Abhiram Nandakumar
Oct 26 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were slightly lower on Monday as investor optimism about central bank easing faded ahead of a Federal Reserve policy meeting this week.
* The Fed, which meets on Oct. 27-28, is scheduled to issue a statement on Wednesday. Investors will scrutinize it for a bearing on when the central bank could raise rates.
* While Fed Chair Janet Yellen has said the central bank could raise rates this year, it would do so only if there are clear signs of sustained economic growth.
* Traders are pricing in only a 6 percent chance of rates being increased on Wednesday and a 39 percent chance of a December hike, according to CME Group's FedWatch program.
* Wall Street closed higher on Friday after a rally in tech stocks helped the S&P 500 to positive territory for the year.
* Strong quarterly results from tech companies helped improve expectations on overall U.S. corporate earnings.
* S&P 500 earnings for the period are now expected to have declined a more modest 2.8 percent, compared with 4.9 percent forecast at the start of the reporting season, according to Thomson Reuters data. Continuación...