* China data disappoints
* Adobe up in premarket after results; to buy Fotolia
* Futures off: Dow 98 pts, S&P 9.5 pts, Nasdaq 23 pts (Adds quote, data)
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, Dec 12 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were set for a lower open on Friday, putting the benchmark S&P 500 on track to snap seven straight weeks of gains, after oil prices fell and Chinese data disappointed.
The S&P index had snapped a three-day skid on Thursday, buoyed by upbeat retail sales figures and other data that pointed to a strengthening U.S. economy, but finished well off its session highs as oil prices slipped.
Weak oil prices have added to worries about global demand and raised concerns about earnings for energy companies, with year-end tax selling putting more pressure on the group. The S&P energy sector has shed 14.7 percent this year and is the worst performing of the 10 major S&P sectors.
“It’s all about the pendulum swing, it works both ways, you can see that $107 in the summertime was ridiculous and now you will see it in the opposite direction, probably towards the $50 range maybe by the end of the year and it’s all sentiment based,” said Terry DuFrene, global investment specialist J.P. Morgan Private Bank in New Orleans.
Futures pared gains slightly after data showed producer prices fell 0.2 percent in November and were muted even outside of energy. The data may influence the U.S. Federal Reserve’s thinking on whether to adjust its pledge to keep interest rates near zero for a “considerable time.”
“This is going to be about the Fed’s next move when they meet next week and gives them a little bit more room to wiggle as far as not being in the camp of rising rates,” said DuFrene.
Brent crude slipped to a low of $62.37, its lowest since July 2009, and was last down 0.6 percent at $63.30. WTI crude dropped below $59 a barrel and was last down 2.4 percent at $58.51 as worries persisted over a global supply glut and sluggish demand. The Select Sector Energy ETF was down 0.7 percent in premarket trade.
S&P 500 e-mini futures were down 9.5 points and fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract, indicated a lower open. Dow Jones industrial average e-mini futures fell 98 points and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures lost 23 points.
Adding to pessimism was data indicating China’s economy showed further signs of softening in November, as factory growth slowed more than expected and investment expansion hovered near a 13-year low.
The preliminary Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan’s report on consumer sentiment is due at 9:55 a.m. (1455 GMT) and is forecast to show a reading of 89.5 for the month.
Adobe Systems rose 5.3 percent to $73.42 in premarket after the company said it would buy stock photography company Fotolia for $800 million and reported quarterly revenue above market estimates.
ChemoCentryx Inc surged 104.5 percent to $9.18 before the opening bell after the company said its experimental drug met the main goal of reducing excessive protein in urine in diabetics with progressive kidney disease.
Editing by Bernadette Baum