U.S. futures struggled for direction on Wednesday amid concern that North Korea could back down from a historic meeting with the U.S. in June.
The S&P 500 futures was up a quarter of a point or 0.01% to 2,709.25 as of 6:49 AM ET (10:49 GMT) while Dow futures decreased nine points or 0.04% to 24,651.0. Meanwhile tech heavy Nasdaq 100 futures rose five points or 0.08% to 6,895.75.
North Korea threatened to withdraw from a June 12 meeting in Singapore in response to joint U.S. -South Korea military drills on Wednesday.
“If they try to corner us and pressure us unilaterally to give up nuclear weapons, we will no longer be interested in such dialogue. We will have to reconsider whether to participate in the upcoming North Korea-US talks,” said Kim Kye Gwan, vice-minister of foreign affairs.
The news brings into question North Korea’s promise to denuclearize. North Korea leader Kim Jong Un was set to meet U.S. President Donald Trump to discuss the country abandoning its nuclear weapons program.
Meanwhile a rise in Treasury yields has also weighed on investors, with the benchmark United States 10-Year yield dipping 0.61% to 3.061 after reaching a seven-year high of 3.095 on Tuesday.
Software firm Micro Focus International PLC ADR (NYSE:MFGP) was among the biggest gainers in pre-market trading, rising 8.55% after it said it expects its revenues for the first half of 2018 to be better than forecast. Meanwhile Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc (NASDAQ:HMNY) increased 7.94% while Teva Pharma Industries Ltd ADR (NYSE:TEVA) was up 3.79%.
Elsewhere Nokia Corp ADR (NYSE:NOK) fell 0.80% while Deutsche Bank AG NA O.N. (NYSE:DB) dipped 2.63% and Santander (NYSE:SAN) was down 2.31%.
In economic news, building permits and housing starts data comes out at 8:30 AM ET (12:30 GMT) while industrial production is scheduled for 9:15 AM ET (13:15 GMT).
In Europe stocks were mixed. Germany’s DAX rose 24 points or 0.19% while in France the CAC 40 decreased four points or 0.08% and in London, the FTSE 100 was up three points or 0.04%. Meanwhile the pan-European Euro Stoxx 50 fell eight points or 0.24% while Spain’s IBEX 35 slumped 97 points or 0.96%.
In commodities, gold futures inched down 0.02% to $1,290.10 a troy ounce while crude oil futures decreased 0.08% to $71.25 a barrel. The U.S. dollar index which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, was up 0.28% to 93.40.