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U.S. Stock-Index Futures Fall Before ECB Meeting Amid Earnings

Feb. 6 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. stock futures fell, after the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index jumped the most in a month yesterday, as investors awaited a European Central Bank policy meeting tomorrow, offsetting corporate earnings that beat analysts’ estimates.

Wynn Resorts Ltd. dropped 3.4 percent amid a report China’s government will take action to clamp down on junket operators that bring gamblers to Macau. Walt Disney Co. climbed 2.8 percent after sales topped estimates and its interactive unit posted its first profit since 2009. Hewlett-Packard Co. added 2.6 percent after a report the company may be studying a breakup.

S&P 500 futures expiring in March lost 0.3 percent to 1,501.7 at 8:19 a.m. in New York. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 32 points, or 0.2 percent, to 13,878 today.

“With every day that the market keeps going up, people are getting dragged into this rally, throwing in the towel and jumping on the train,” Ivo Weinoehrl, who helps manage about $380 billion as U.S. equity portfolio manager at DWS Investments, said by telephone from Frankfurt. “It’s a good environment for stock-pickers if you use every pull-back to increase your positions and profit.”

ECB President Mario Draghi will head a meeting of policy makers tomorrow in Frankfurt as euro-area leaders gather for a summit in Brussels. The S&P 500 has rallied 6 percent in 2013 as U.S. lawmakers reached a budget compromise and companies reported better-than-estimated earnings.

Earnings Season

Visa Inc., News Corp. and Prudential Financial Inc. are among 24 companies in the S&P 500 scheduled to report earnings today. About 74 percent of index members that have released results so far in the earnings season exceeded profit projections, and 66 percent beat sales estimates, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Wynn Resorts, which depends on its Macau unit for most of its revenue, dropped $4.25 percent to $121.50. China’s government will start taking action this month to clamp down on junket operators that bring gamblers from the mainland to Macau, the London-based Times reported on its website, citing unidentified people in law enforcement.

Disney, the world’s largest entertainment company, advanced $1.51 to $55.80. The owner of the “Star Wars” and “Avengers” franchises said first-quarter profit adjusted for some items was 79 cents a share, topping the 77-cent average of 26 analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales rose 5.2 percent to $11.3 billion.

Zynga Rallies

Zynga Inc. rallied 4.7 percent to $2.87. Sales were $311.2 million in the fourth quarter, unchanged from a year earlier, the company said late yesterday. Analysts on average had predicted revenue would decline to $250.2 million, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Excluding certain items, Zynga posted a profit of 1 cent a share, compared with projections for a 3-cent loss.

Hewlett-Packard added 44 cents to $17.05. The world’s largest personal-computer maker is considering a break-up of the company among other options, website Quartz reported, citing people familiar with the matter. HP declined to comment, according to Quartz. Hewlett-Packard’s board isn’t actively studying a break-up plan, AllThingsD said, citing an unidentified source familiar with the matter.

Expedia Inc. advanced 2.1 percent to $68.92. The online travel-booking service posted sales of $974.9 million for the fourth quarter, more than the $931 million average estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Gross bookings increased 19 percent in the period, the company said late yesterday.

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