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Last updated: February 16. 2013 6:49PM - 62 Views

Robert Vella, center, works with fellow traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012. Stocks are inching higher in early trading after the U.S. government reported that claims for unemployment benefits fell last week. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
Robert Vella, center, works with fellow traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012. Stocks are inching higher in early trading after the U.S. government reported that claims for unemployment benefits fell last week. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
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(AP) U.S. stock market futures are falling after the Commerce Department reported declining orders for durable goods, excluding volatile transportations sales.


It was the fourth decline in five months, a sustained drag in the nation's manufacturing sector.


Dow Jones industrial futures are down 8 points to 13,031. The broader S&P futures have given up 2.6 points to 1,396.50. Nasdaq futures are down 3 points to 2,758.


The Commerce Department said Friday that orders for durable goods rose a seasonally adjusted 4.2 percent in July. Excluding transportation goods, orders dropped 0.4 percent.


Declines in the U.S. markets are set to follow drops worldwide amid new signs of weakness in the global economy. In Britain, for instance, government data showed that the economy fell in the April to June period, and the nation is still mired in recession. The European debt crisis is still weighing as well, with Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras set to meet with German and French leaders today and tomorrow, seeking more time to fix his nation's troubled economy and finances.


Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.4 percent to 5,754.23. Germany's DAX dropped 0.44 percent, while France's CAC 40 gave up .075 percent.


Earlier, major Asian markets closed down. Japan's Nikkei 225 declined 1.2 percent and China's benchmark Shanghai Composite Index lost 1 percent.


U.S. stocks to watch include drugmaker Eli Lilly, which bucked the downward trend to jump more than 8 percent in premarket trading. Lilly's treatment for Alzheimer's disease showed statistically significant slowing of cognitive decline, even though it failed in other aspects of the study. The Madison Square Garden Co. reported its fiscal fourth-quarter profit tripled, and the entertainment company's stock jumped more than 10 percent premarket.


Autodesk Inc. shares plunged more than 22 percent after the software maker reported weaker-than-expected second-quarter results.


Associated Press
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