Futures fall to end volatile trading week

NEW YORK (AP) — Stock futures slipped in light volume Friday to cap a tremendously volatile week of trading. A new report showed that U.S. wholesale prices rose more than expected last month.

Dow Jones industrial futures fell 14 points to 15,103. The broader S&P futures gave up 1.5 points to 1,629.40. Nasdaq futures edged down a point to 2,956.

Rising food and gas costs drove a measure of wholesale prices up sharply in May, the Labor Department said, but inflation remained mild otherwise.

If inflation remains under control, the government will feel more at ease in using economic tools to spur growth.

Energy prices have been suppressed both by more efficiency and also a huge boom in U.S. production. Yet events overseas this week demonstrated how quickly that can change.

The price of oil rose above $97 per barrel early Friday on concerns that the conflict in Syria is about to escalate. Turmoil in the Middle East has the potential to put a strain on energy supply.

The U.S. authorized lethal aid to Syrian rebels Thursday after announcing that it had determined that Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime used chemical weapons against opposition forces.

Obama said the use of chemical weapons would push the Syrian regime over a “red line,” suggesting greater American intervention in the two-year conflict. The extent of that involvement is not known.

The Group of Eight industrial nations meet in Northern Ireland next week.

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