Stock futures edge higher ahead of data, Volcker eyed

on February 02 2010 7:40 AM

Stock index futures rose slightly on Tuesday ahead of housing and retail sales data, while investors awaited White House adviser Paul Volcker's testimony before a Senate panel urging that lawmakers curb risks taken by large banks.

* S&P 500 futures rose 2.8 points and were 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 gained 25 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 4.25 points.

* Volcker, a former Federal Reserve chairman, will tell the Senate Banking Committee that commercial banks' proprietary and speculative activities should not be protected by the government, according to testimony obtained by Reuters.

* Redbook releases its retail sales index of department and chain store sales for January at 8:55 a.m. EST, while the National Association of Realtors will issue pending home sales for December at 10 a.m. EST. Economists surveyed by Reuters expect a 1.0 percent rise compared with a 16.0 percent fall in the previous month.

* On the earnings front, Dow Chemical Co , Pepsi Bottling Group Inc and Whirlpool Corp all reported quarterly results.

, United Parcel Service Inc and News Corp are due to report results.

* Resource-related shares will be in the spotlight after British oil major BP Plc posted a lower-than-forecast 33 percent rise in quarterly profit and cautioned that an turnaround in operations could slow this year. Its shares dropped 4.7 percent.

* Crude oil prices rose more than 1 percent, topping $75 a barrel, as traders awaited data on crude and middle distillate inventories.

* Shares in Barnes & Noble Inc jumped more than 17 percent to $21.20 after the bell after the bookstore chain said billionaire investor Ronald Burkle's Yucaipa American Management sought permission to nearly double its stake in the to 37 percent without triggering a poison pill.

* U.S. stocks rose on Monday as better-than-forecast data from the manufacturing sector and earnings from Exxon Mobil Corp revived bullish sentiment.

(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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