Stock index futures pointed to a higher open for Wall Street on Wednesday, boosted by upbeat earnings from technology firm Intel , with S&P 500 futures up 0.6 percent, Nasdaq futures 1.1 percent higher, and futures for the Dow Jones industrial average up 0.6 percent by 0907 GMT (5:07 a.m. EDT).

Intel, the world's top microchip maker, reported second-quarter earnings that beat analysts' expectations, allaying fears that companies may be slowing down their spending on technology.

Shares in Intel in Frankfurt rose 6.5 percent.

Wall Street rallied for a sixth straight day on Tuesday after Alcoa's quarterly results a day earlier heartened investors on the outlook for the earnings season, after recent jitters over the sustainability of the global economic recovery.

Hotel company Marriott International is expected to report second-quarter results on Wednesday.

Investors will closely watch U.S. financial firms due to report earnings this week, with JPMorgan Chase reporting on Thursday and Bank of America , Citigroup and General Electric releasing numbers on Friday.

Among individual company news, BP Plc on Tuesday delayed a critical test that will determine if it can close a cap atop its ruptured Macondo well, which has leaked oil into the Gulf of Mexico for the last 12 weeks.

Nokia Siemens Networks is in talks to buy the telecom-equipment arm of Motorola Inc , according to the Wall Street Journal.

Macroeconomic data set for release on Wednesday include U.S. retail sales figures for June at 1230 GMT, which are likely to show sales fell for a second straight month in June, providing further confirmation that the economic recovery is losing momentum.

Other data include the weekly mortgage index at 1100 GMT, and May's business inventories at 1400 GMT. The minutes to the latest FOMC meeting will be published at 1800 GMT.

Europe's top share index <.FTEU3> pared gains in morning trade, with banks losing ground, offsetting strength from technology stocks which were boosted by Intel's strong results.

U.S. Senate Democrats on Tuesday appeared to nail down the votes needed to approve a historic overhaul of U.S. financial regulations and set up a final vote by the end of the week.

A top Federal Reserve official said on Tuesday that the U.S. economic recovery is on track despite some setbacks and the central bank should take no additional actions to encourage economic growth.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 146.75 points, or 1.44 percent, to 10,363.02. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 16.59 points, or 1.54 percent, to 1,095.34. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> jumped 43.67 points, or 1.99 percent, to 2,242.03.

(Reporting by Harpreet Bhal; editing by Simon Jessop)