US STOCKS-Futures flat as GE, BofA revs disappoint

* BofA, Citi shares fall after profit reports

* GE off as qtrly revs fall

* CPI and consumer sentiment data awaited

* Futures: Dow up 7 pts, S&P off 0.5 pts, Nasdaq up 2.5

* For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
(Updates prices, adds quotes)

By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK, July 16 (BestGrowthStock) – U.S. stock index futures were
little changed on Friday after General Electric Co’s and Bank
of America’s profits topped expectations but revenues declined,
underscoring corporate America’s struggles against headwinds in
the economic recovery.

The three major indexes have risen seven out of the past
eight sessions despite some earnings missteps, including from
technology giant Google Inc (Read more about Google Stock Analysis) (GOOG.O: ), which reported adjusted
earnings late Thursday that missed expectations for the first
time in two years. [ID:nN15232993]

While both GE (GE.N: ) and Bank of America Corp (BAC.N: )
reported better-than-expected profits, the Dow components
dropped in premarket trading as both posted revenue declines.
Bank of America’s profit was also lower, sending the stock 4.5
percent lower to $14.69. GE sank 2 percent to $14.95. For
details, see [ID:nN16144753] and [ID:nN15227124]

“Bank of America looks to be a bit of a disappointment but
nevertheless the overall trend for stocks remains high,” said
Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Avalon Partners in
New York.

“Investors will wait until conference calls to digest what
the numbers mean, considering that guidance is the key here. It
will show how corporate America performs in this slow growth
environment,” he said.

S&P 500 futures (SPc1: ) fell 0.5 points and were below fair
value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account
interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the
contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures (DJc1: ) gained 7
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures (NDc1: ) added 2.5 points.

Citigroup Inc (C.N: ) reported a 37 percent drop in quarterly
profit, hurt by lower investment banking revenue. The stock
fell 2.2 percent to $4.07. [ID:nN16269408]

Investors closely watched the earnings scorecards for
insight into how corporations are faring as the economy fights
headwinds in its recovery.

Financials will be in focus after the results from BofA and
Citi and after Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N: ) agreed to settle
a U.S. civil case. The stock rose 4.6 percent to $151.85 before
the bell. [ID:nN15236037]

Data coming later Friday will provide insight into consumer
sentiment and the threat of deflation.

The preliminary Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan
Surveys of Consumers is expected to show that sentiment edged
slightly lower to 74.5 in July from June’s reading of 76. In
addition, June consumer prices, excluding food and energy, are
seen rising 0.1 percent, the same as in May.

Mark Luschini, the chief investment strategist at Janney
Montgomery Scott in Philadelphia, expects the CPI data to be
“exceedingly weak.”

“It could suggest that deflation is a real risk, and that
might be enough to trump even the better than expected earnings
from these major companies.”

U.S.-listed shares of BP Plc (BP.N: ) slid 1.1 percent to
$38.45 before the bell even as it said it had halted the spew
of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, at least temporarily.
[ID:nN15255571]

Stress tests on European banks should not reveal any
“catastrophes” but the reviews should be tough, the chairman of
euro zone finance ministers was quoted as saying.
[ID:nLDE66F0AZ]

The U.S. Congress approved the broadest overhaul of
financial rules since the Great Depression on Thursday and sent
it to U.S. President Barack Obama to sign into law.
[ID:nN15226910]

European stocks were flat on Friday as the U.S. earnings
offset strength in BP’s London-listed shares. Japan’s Nikkei
average (.N225: ) ended down nearly 3 percent as investors
worried the yen could rise further towards 15-year highs
against the dollar.

U.S. stocks (Read more about the stock market today. ) were lower for most of Thursday’s session,
though they later rebounded after the Goldman settlement and
BP’s success with its well.
(Additional reporting by Angela Moon; editing by Jeffrey
Benkoe)

US STOCKS-Futures flat as GE, BofA revs disappoint