US STOCKS-Futures rise as jobless claims expected to edge lower

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* Futures up: Dow 0.24%, S&P 0.25%, Nasdaq 0.38%

March 25 (Reuters) - U.S. stock futures rose on Thursday ahead of data that is likely to show a drop in weekly jobless claims, while the technology-heavy Nasdaq looked set to rebound after a 2% drop in the previous session.

The Nasdaq Composite, home to the best-performing stocks last year including Apple Inc, Inc and Tesla Inc, has fallen this month as rosy economic projections lifted demand for undervalued stocks including energy, mining and industrial firms.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Wednesday again expressed optimism about a strong U.S. economic rebound, with Powell saying the most likely case is 2021 will be “a very, very strong year.”

The Labor Department’s weekly jobless claims report, the most timely indicator of economic health, is expected to show claims fell to 730,000 in the week ended March 20 from 770,000 in the previous week.

Economically-sensitive bank stocks including JPMorgan Chase & Co, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America were up between 0.2% and 0.8% in premarket trading.

Heavyweight tech stocks Facebook Inc, Google parent Alphabet Inc and Twitter Inc rose between 0.3% and 0.5% ahead of their chief executives’ testimony before Congress about extremism and misinformation on their services.

At 6:54 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 76 points, or 0.24%, S&P 500 e-minis were up 9.75 points, or 0.25%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 48.25 points, or 0.38%.

Shares of Nike Inc fell 4.1% as the sporting goods giant faced a Chinese social media backlash over its comments about reports of forced labor in Xinjiang.

U.S.-listed shares of Baidu Inc, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and JD.Com Inc were subdued after the U.S. securities regulator adopted measures that would kick foreign companies off stock exchanges if they do not comply with U.S. auditing standards. (Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)