July 15, 2016 / 12:57 PM / 2 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St set to open higher on strong retail sales data

* U.S. June retail sales up 0.6 pct vs est. 0.1 pct

* Citi profit beats estimates, Wells Fargo profit in line

* Nice attack weighs on travel and airline stocks

* Futures up: Dow 21 pts, S&P 2.75 pts, Nasdaq 2.25 pts (Adds details, comments, updates prices)

By Yashaswini Swamynathan

July 15 (Reuters) - The Dow and the benchmark S&P 500, trading at record highs, were set to open slightly higher on Friday, after better-than-expected monthly retail sales offset mixed results from Citigroup and Wells Fargo.

U.S. retail sales rose more than expected in June as Americans bought motor vehicles and a variety of other goods, reinforcing views that economic growth picked up in the second quarter.

Citi’s second-quarter profit fell less than expected, while Wells Fargo’s profit fell in line with expectations. Citi shares rose 1.4 percent premarket, while Wells Fargo’s dropped about 1 percent.

The tepid results failed to match up to the expectation set by JPMorgan’s strong numbers on Thursday, that helped power the S&P to its fourth intraday high in a row and the Dow to its third.

Dow e-minis were up 21 points, or 0.11 percent at 8:34 a.m. ET (1234 GMT), with 33,027 contracts changing hands.

S&P 500 e-minis were up 2.75 points, or 0.13 percent, with 232,598 contracts traded.

Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 2.25 points, or 0.05 percent, on volume of 22,077 contracts.

Strong China data helped push world stocks to eight-month highs, but an attack in Nice, France that killed at least 84 people and injured scores weighed on sentiment.

“I am optimistic about the (U.S.) markets today, but we are going to see some reaction to the attack in Nice,” said Robert Pavlik, chief market strategist at Boston Private Wealth in New York.

Following news of the attack, shares of travel operators and airlines dropped on fears about travel to Europe.

Priceline, Expedia and TripAdvisor were down 1-2 percent, while Delta, Southwest and United Continental were also down 1-2 percent.

Herbalife jumped 6.6 percent to $63.25 after the weight-loss products maker agreed to pay the FTC $200 million to avoid being classified a pyramid scheme. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza)

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