US STOCKS-Futures climb after two-day rally

Fri Dec 19, 2014 8:29am EST
 
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* Blackberry falls in premarket after results

* Brent holds near $60 a barrel

* Futures up: Dow 51 pts, S&P 5.5 pts, Nasdaq 17 pts (Adds premarket actives data)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, Dec 19 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures climbed on Friday, and the benchmark S&P 500 index was poised to continue to rally after its best two-day run in three years.

* The S&P has climbed 4.5 percent over the past two sessions, spurred by the U.S. Federal Reserve's commitment on Wednesday to take a "patient" approach toward raising interest rates while signaling it was on track to raise rates in 2015. That provided clarity and relief to investors over the policy outlook, analysts said.

* Brent crude oil rose hovered near $60 a barrel on Friday, recovering from near a 5-1/2-year low while WTI crude advanced 0.8 percent to $54.54.

* Stocks may experience volatility on Friday as a result of "quadruple witching," the expiration of stock options, index options, index futures and single-stock futures. In addition, the rebalance of the S&P 500 is scheduled to take effect after the close.

* U.S.-listed shares of Blackberry dropped 4.7 percent to $9.60 in premarket after the company posted a small adjusted third-quarter profit and returned to positive cash flow, but revenue declined more than expected. The stock was the most actively traded issue on the Nasdaq before the opening bell with volume of over 1.3 million   Continued...