Futures turned negative again in choppy pre-market trading Thursday as grim comments from ECB President Mario Draghi weighed on sentiment and even trumped a pair of better-than-expected employment reports.
"Economic growth in the euro area continues to remain weak , with heightened uncertainty weighing on confidence and sentiment," European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said at a news conference, adding the euro zone economy was subject to downside risks.
Earlier, the ECB slashed its interest rate to a record low of 0.75 percent and its deposit rate to zero in an effort to help tackle the ongoing euro zone crisis. European shares pared their gains .
And China's central bank also cut its interest rates for the second time in two months .
On the economic front, private employers added 176,000 jobs in June, according to the ADP National Employment Report, beating expectations for a gain of 105,000 positions. May's figures were revised up slightly to an increase of 136,000 jobs from the previously reported 133,000.
In addition, weekly jobless claims dropped 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 374,000, according to the Labor Department, marking the biggest decline since April . Economists expected claims falling to 385,000, according to a Reuters poll. The four-week moving average for new claims fell 1,500 to 385,750.
Both reports come ahead of the key government non-farm payroll report on Friday. Economists surveyed by Reuters expect to see a gain of 90,000 in June following an increase of 69,000 in the month prior.
Also on the economic front, the Institute for Supply Management releases its June non-manufacturing index at 10:00 am ET. A Reuters poll of analysts predicted a read of 53.0, down from 53.7 in May.
Moody's Investors Service changed the outlook on Barclays to "negative" from "stable," citing the uncertain management outlook after recent departures in the light of the Libor scandal.
Many retailers posted weaker-than-expected same-store sales in June, as consumers pulled back on spending amid concerns about jobs and the economy. Macy's , Costco , Wet Seal and The Buckle were among some of the companies that disappointed.
Auto parts supplier Visteon said it would offer some $800 million to take full control of South Korean car air conditioner maker Halla Climate Control, but analysts cautioned that a key shareholder may hold out for more.
Buyout fund CarlyleGroup said it had acquired 49 percent of China's MandarinHotel Holdings for an undisclosed sum, giving it control of the company.
The stock market was closed Wednesday for Independence Day and closed early on Tuesday. Volume is expected to remain thin throughout the week.
—By CNBC’s JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC )
Coming Up This Week:
THURSDAY: ISM non-mfg index, oil inventories, chain-store salesFRIDAY: Non-farm payrolls
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