The Fed begins its two-day meeting and is expected to keep rates unchanged near zero, leaving investors to focus on accompanying comments about the state of the economy.
A busy day for data will keep investors searching for clues on the state of the world's largest economy.
S&P 500 futures fell 3 points and were below 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 dropped 29 points and Nasdaq 100 futures lost 5.25 points.
At 7:45 a.m. EST (1245 GMT) ICSC/Goldman Sachs chain store sales will be released for the week ended December 12 versus the prior week. In the previous week, sales fell 1.3 percent.
The New York Federal Reserve releases its Empire State manufacturing survey for December at 8:30 a.m. EST (1330 GMT). Economists expect a reading of 24.00 compared with 23.51 in November.
Also at 8:30 a.m. (1330 GMT), the Labor Dept releases the November producer price index. Economists in a Reuters survey forecast a 0.8 percent increase, compared with a 0.3 percent rise in October. Excluding volatile food and energy items, PPI is seen up 0.2 percent, compared with a 0.6 percent drop in the prior month.
Redbook releases at 8:55 a.m. (1355 GMT) its retail sales index of department and chain store sales for December versus November.
The Federal Reserve releases industrial production and capacity utilization data for November at 9:15 a.m. (1415 GMT). Economists forecast an 0.5 percent increase in production compared with a 0.1 percent rise in October.
Investors will also keep an eye on National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo's December housing market index, due at 1 p.m. (1800 GMT).
Boeing Co is set to make the first test flight of its 787 Dreamliner on Tuesday, after a delay of almost two-and-a-half years. The new fuel-efficient plane is seen as key to the company's future.
Kraft Foods Inc said it will maintain discipline in its pursuit of British chocolate maker Cadbury Plc , suggesting the U.S. group will resist calls to raise its offer.
Starlims Technologies Ltd's shares surged more than 40 percent in premarket trading after the Israel-based company agreed to be acquired by Abbott Laboratories for about $123 million.
European stocks turned negative Tuesday morning, potentially halting a three-session winning run, as banking shares slipped.
U.S. stocks closed at 14-month highs on Monday as Abu Dhabi's $10 billion in aid to help Dubai eased concerns over the emirate's debt problems and Exxon Mobil Corp's proposed $30 billion takeover of XTO Energy Inc raised optimism about merger-and-acquisition activity.
(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)