* Chinese factory activity shrinks for 14th straight month
* AIG falls after missing estimates for 3rd straight quarter
* Pfizer higher after reporting rise in quarterly profit
* Futures down: Dow 122 pts, S&P 15 pts, Nasdaq 31 pts (Adds details, comment, updates prices)
By Tanya Agrawal
May 3 (Reuters) - Wall Street looked set to open lower on Tuesday as weak Chinese economic data and a surprise rate cut by the Australian central bank raised concerns about the health of the global economy.
Activity at China’s factories shrank for the 14th straight month in April as demand stagnated, a private survey showed.
Australia’s central bank also sprang a surprise by cutting interest rates to a record low of 1.75 percent. The majority of economists surveyed by Reuters had expected no change.
“The negative news out of China and Australia having to stimulate its economy again is spooking the market today,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial in New York.
“The market is in the midst of a pullback and nervous about lower growth, which might mean weaker earnings in the coming quarters.”
S&P 500 e-minis were down 14.75 points, or 0.71 percent, with 220,542 contracts traded at 8:25 a.m. ET (1225 GMT). Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 31 points, or 0.71 percent, on volume of 26,034 contracts. Dow e-minis were down 122 points, or 0.69 percent, with 29,609 contracts changing hands.
Recovering oil prices and an accommodative Federal Reserve have helped the S&P 500 rise by about 14 percent since mid-February. However, the index faltered last week, weighed down by lackluster earnings and mixed economic data.
While first-quarter earnings from S&P 500 companies have mostly beaten analysts’ expectations, they are still expected to fall 5.7 percent from a year ago, according to Thomson Reuters data.
The Fed held monetary policy steady last week after raising interest rates in December for the first time in nearly a decade. While the central bank kept the door open to a hike in June, it gave no signal that it was in a hurry to tighten further.
Investors will be keeping an eye on unemployment numbers at the end of the week for signs confirming that the labor market continues to gain in strength.
Oil prices fell as rising output from the Middle East and North Sea renewed concerns about a global supply overhang.
Shares of drugmaker Pfizer were up 2.7 percent at $33.69 in premarket trading after the company reported a rise in quarterly revenue.
American International Group fell 3.2 percent to $54.80 after reporting a lower-than-expected profit for the third straight quarter.
Drugmaker Mylan was up 3.5 percent at $44.20, after posting a 17 percent rise in quarterly revenue, helped by higher generic drug sales. (Reporting by Tanya Agrawal; Editing by Anil D‘Silva)