U.S. stocks appeared headed for a moderately lower opening Tuesday as investors waited to see if economic and earnings figures would justify a further rebound from last month's selloff.
Tuesday's data arrive as investors try to determine the fallout from the subprime mortgage industry. Shares of New Century Financial, after further describing a raft of financial troubles Monday, remained halted Monday as the New York Stock Exchange began a review of the stock's listing status.
U.S. markets, which have taken some cues from overseas markets of late, could look to only a mixed performance abroad. Wall Street itself posted a moderate advance on Monday.
Investors expect Commerce Department data on retail sales rose in February will show an increase of 0.3 percent from January.
The International Council of Shopping Centers also reports on chain store sales, and Redbook releases its retail sales index. Last week, individual retailers reported lackluster clothing sales for February.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson is set to speak before the opening bell at a Washington conference.
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. kicks off a string of earnings reports from the big Wall Street brokerages and Kroger Co. and Revlon Inc. are scheduled to weigh in with their fourth-quarter results, reports AP.
Dow Jones industrials futures fell 7 points, or 0.06 percent, to 12,404.00. Standard & Poor's 500 index futures slipped 1.50, or 0.11 percent, to 1,418.00, while Nasdaq 100 index futures fell 3.25, or 0.18 percent, to 1,775.00.
Russian President Vladimir Putin got the West worried again by signing Decree No. 915. The news did not produce any public effect in Russia