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Futures flat with indexes at records

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[June 09, 2014]  By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were little changed on Monday, as investors sought fresh incentives to keep buying following a rally that has taken major indexes to repeated record highs.

The S&P 500 has risen in 10 of the past 12 sessions, ending at records six times in the past seven trading days. On Friday, the benchmark index was lifted by the May payroll report, which pointed to improving economic conditions, though it was slightly weaker than expected. While Wall Street's upward trend looks intact, traders may need new catalysts to maintain its momentum.

Market participants will also continue to watch the CBOE Volatility index .VIX, which on Friday fell to its lowest level since February 2007. The "fear index" is almost half of its historical average, which some analysts worry is a signal that the market is not fully accounting for issues that could derail the rally.

Apple Inc AAPL.O may see heavy action on Monday, the first session after a seven-for-one stock split. The tech titan rose 0.2 percent to $92.38 before the bell and was the Nasdaq's most active premarket name. In addition, the Nikkei on Friday reported that Apple was preparing to sell its first wearable device this October, aiming to produce 3 million to 5 million smartwatches a month in its initial run.

S&P 500 futures SPc1 fell 1.6 point and was about even with fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures DJc1 added 2 points and Nasdaq 100 futures NDc1 fell 3 points.

About 55,000 S&P 500 e-mini ESc1 contracts traded hands as of 7:00 a.m. EDT (1100 GMT), indicating another day of light trading, which could make the market susceptible to big swings.

In company news, sources said Tyson Foods Inc TSN.N has prevailed over Pilgrim's Pride Corp PPC.O in a bidding war for Jimmy Dean sausage maker Hillshire Brands Co HSH.N.

General Motors Co GM.N late Friday announced four more recalls covering 105,688 cars and trucks globally, raising the number of recalls to 34, including the high-profile one for defective ignition switches linked to at least 13 deaths.

Time Inc TIME.N, which is being spun off from its parent Time Warner Inc TWX.N, will begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Monday.

(Editing by Bernadette Baum)

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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