U.S. stock index futures rose on Thursday with investors eyeing a government report on weekly jobless claims and corporate earnings, one day after Wall Street ended a four-day rally.
U.S. stocks ended a run-up on Wednesday that drove the three major indexes up to their nine-month to 10-month highs.
Investors will look for clues on whether the pace of job losses is slowing when the U.S. Labor Department releases first-time claims for jobless benefits for last week at 8:30 a.m. (1230 GMT). Economists in a survey by Reuters are expecting initial claims to dip to 580,000 from 584,000 the week earlier.
Continuing claims for jobless benefits are expected to rise to 6.23 million from 6.197 million, according to a Reuters survey.
The job data will give us a feel as to, 'Are things stabilizing in the job market?' but as long as it is not contrary to the recovery mindset in a major sense, the belief in the market is that we have seen and been in the worst, said Andre Bakhos, president of Princeton Financial Group in Princeton, New Jersey.
Nasdaq futures were slightly higher with Cisco Systems Inc
S&P 500 index futures were up 4.10 points, above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 40 points, while Nasdaq 100 futures rose 3.0 points.
Shares of American International Group Inc
Also advancing in the premarket trading was Bank of America Corp
Corporate quarterly results on tap include El Paso Corp
Futures also gained ground after the Bank of England announced it will raise the size of its quantitative easing program. The BoE raised the size of its bond purchase plan to an unexpectedly large 175 billion pounds from 125 billion and held interest rates steady at 0.5 percent.
(Reporting by Angela Moon; Editing by Padraic Cassidy)