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U.S. stocks were poised to open little changed Thursday morning ahead of a slew of economic reports, and as gas topped $3 a gallon for the first time in more than two years.
Dow Jones industrial average (INDU) and S&P 500 (SPX) futures were nearly flat, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq (COMP) futures down 0.2%.
On Wednesday, Stocks climbed to fresh two-year highs. Trading is usually light in the sessions before the holidays, but investors are focusing on -- and feeling bullish about -- 2011.
The University of Michigan's final reading on consumer sentiment in December is due after the start of trading. It's expected to tick up to 74.8, from 74.2 in the previous month.
Meanwhile, the new home sales index for November from the Census Bureau is due at 1500 GMT. The index is expected to have risen to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 300,000 units, from a 283,000 unit rate in the previous month.
Gold futures for February delivery fell $7.00 to $1,380.40 an ounce.
Bonds: The price on the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury was slightly lower, pushing the yield up to 3.38%.
U.S. markets will be closed Friday for the holiday weekend.
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