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Stock futures flat after mixed data overseas

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[June 23, 2014]  By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stock futures were little changed on Monday, after a six-day rally in the benchmark S&P 500, as upbeat manufacturing data in China was offset by soft readings on business activity in Europe.

The HSBC/Markit Flash China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index rose to 50.8 in June from May's final reading of 49.4, topping the 49.7 and edging above the 50-point level that separates growth in activity from contraction for the first time since December.

But Markit's Composite Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI), for the euro zone, fell to 52.8 from May's 53.5, well below the estimate for 53.5 in a Reuters survey, with France being a notable laggard showing contraction.

The S&P 500 has risen for six straight sessions, its longest streak since mid-April, to gain 1.7 percent over that span.

Markit's flash PMI reading for the U.S. for June is due at 9:00 a.m. (1300 GMT). Expectations call for a reading of 56.5 for the month, just above the prior 56.4.

Later in the session at 10:00 a.m. (1400 GMT). Existing home sales data for May is due, with expectations for a rise to an annual rate of 4.73 million units from 4.65 million in April.

S&P 500 e-mini futures were up 0.25 point and fair value - a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract - indicated a flat open. Dow Jones industrial average e-mini futures fell 4 points and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures lost 2.25 points.

France won an option to buy 20 percent of Alstom  from construction group Bouygues on Sunday in an eleventh-hour deal, clearing the way for the agreed sale of Alstom's energy business to General Electric.

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Wisconsin Energy  said it would buy Integrys Energy Group Inc in a deal valued at $9.1 billion to create a larger, more diverse Midwest electric and natural gas delivery company. Integrys shares were up 16.3 percent to $70.90 in light premarket trading.

European stocks dipped on the downbeat readings of euro zone business while Asian stocks rose on encouraging data from China's factory sector.

(Editing by Bernadette Baum)

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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