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U.S. Stock-Index Futures Drop as Kerry Warns Russia; Ford Falls

April 25 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. stock-index futures dropped, indicating that equity benchmarks will pare their second week of gains, as John Kerry warned of costs to Russia’s economy unless it eases tensions in Ukraine.

Ford declined 2.8 percent after reporting net income that missed estimates. Visa Inc. declined 3.6 percent after reporting revenue that missed predictions. Microsoft Corp. climbed 1.4 percent after posting quarterly profit that exceeded projections. Starbucks Corp. added 1.6 percent after it forecast full-year earnings that beat estimates.

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index expiring in June dropped 0.3 percent to 1,867.2 at 7:12 a.m. in New York. The equity benchmark has advanced 0.7 percent this week as companies from Apple Inc. to Netflix Inc. reported earnings that beat estimates. Dow Jones Industrial Average contracts decreased 63 points, or 0.4 percent, to 16,368 today.

“The situation in Ukraine seems to be getting more tense,” said Jacques Porta, who helps oversee $780 million at Ofi Gestion Privee in Paris. “A war would be a disaster for everybody. I think they will find a deal. With the U.S. earnings season, we’re seeing some good surprises. This is very good for our overweight position on U.S. stocks. Company earnings are being helped by cost-cutting measures, an improvement in the U.S. economy and a weaker dollar.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin has failed to meet commitments made at a meeting in Geneva a week ago to avoid an escalation of the crisis in Ukraine, Secretary of State Kerry said in Washington late yesterday. President Barack Obama plans to call European leaders today to discuss sanctions, following the resumption of military drills by Russian troops along the country’s border with Ukraine.

Kerry’s Threat

“If Russia continues in this direction, it will not just be a grave mistake, it will be an expensive mistake,” Kerry said. “The window to change course is closing. If Russia chooses the path of de-escalation, the international community –- all of us –- will welcome it. If Russia does not, the world will make sure that the cost for Russia will only grow.”

Ford Motor Co., Whirlpool Corp. and 13 other S&P 500 members report earnings today. Of the 225 companies that have released results this season, 76 percent have exceeded analysts’ profit estimates, while 53 percent have beaten sales projections, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Analysts predict the benchmark’s constituents will collectively report a 0.7 percent increase in first-quarter profit and a 2.6 percent gain in revenue.

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