US STOCKS-Wall St lower as nerves rise ahead of Yellen speech
* Fed Chair Janet Yellen due to speak on Friday
* Kansas Fed President calls for gradual rates hikes
* Jobless claims drop; New orders for durable goods up
* Indexes down: Dow 0.12 pct, S&P 0.15 pct, Nasdaq 0.16 pct (Updates to open)
By Yashaswini Swamynathan
Aug 25 (Reuters) - Wall Street was lower on Thursday morning as investors nervously awaited Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's take on interest rate hikes.
While the Fed is widely expected to maintain rates at its September meeting, Yellen's language on Friday morning will be assessed to see whether she takes a more aggressive stance.
Investors have been playing a waiting game all week, expecting Yellen to either endorse or dismiss the hawkish tone set by key policymakers, the latest from Kansas City Fed President and voting member, Esther George, on Thursday.
"I do think it is time to move that rate," George told CNBC, arguing on the basis of progress in employment and inflation. She also said rates should be increased gradually. Continuación...