REUTER'S US STOCKS-Futures extend losses on jobless claims Thu Aug 7, 2008 8:40am EDT NEW YORK, Aug 7 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures extended losses on Thursday as a government report showed that the number of people filing for jobless benefits rose in the latest week, suggesting further deterioration in the labor market. That economic report, along with a big loss from insurer American International Group Inc (AIG.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and a sales shortfall from Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) cued Wall Street for a lower open. A rebound in oil prices, back above $120 a barrel, was an additional headwind. 2 weeks ago, I said inflation will continue to drive down consumer spending which represents 65% of all US economic activity and further increase unemployment. Well, here we have the world's largest retailer coming up with lower than expected earnings. Once again, the stock market is not a good indicator of which way the economy is headed. Maybe for the long-term, but certainly not by looking at daily or weekly stock market trends. Investors are very fickle and reactionary (too many day-traders). But unemployment trends are a great indicator of economic trends as they are long-term decisions.