The US bourse is set to open higher as European leaders get ready to meet.

New York - US stocks Friday opened lower following reports showing lower consumer spending and weak results for leading retailers.

Five minutes into trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 48.80 (0.29 percent) to 16,649.94.

The broad-based S&P 500, which notched a new record Thursday, dipped 2.69 (0.14 percent) to 1,917.34, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index declined 2.78 (0.07 percent) to 4,245.17.

The Commerce Department reported that consumer spending, the largest driver of the US economy, fell by $9.1 billion last month, or 0.1 percent, following the $120.2 billion rise the previous month.

Casual clothing chain Express slumped 12 percent after reporting an 11 percent decline in first-quarter comparable sales and projecting annual earnings of 74-90 cents per share.

Analysts had forecast profits of $1.14 per share.

Fashion retailer Guess meanwhile fell 5.0 percent following a net loss of $2.1 million for the first quarter. - Sapa-AFP