Stock index futures rose on Thursday after three days of market gains as investors welcomed signs that European leaders are committed to keeping Greece afloat for now.
Investor sentiment was given a boost after Wednesday's conference call between leaders of France, Germany and Greece showed a commitment to keep debt-stricken Greece in the euro zone.
S&P 500 futures gained 6.9 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 were up 60 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 20.25 points.
I have no doubt that Greece stays in the euro zone, said Peter Boockvar, equity strategist at Miller Tabak + Co in New York. It's just the state of their balance sheet that needs to be fixed and that will ultimately be done through a 50 percent plus cut to the value of their existing debt outstanding.
Germany and France called on Greece to implement all financial reforms strictly and effectively, a German government spokesman said.
Greece expects policymakers to report the government is on track to fulfill its targets and receive the aid needed to avoid a debt default, a Greek official said.
As part of a slew of U.S. data, the Labor Department releases first-time claims for jobless benefits for the week ended September 10 at 8:30 a.m. EDT. Economists forecast a total of 410,000 new filings, compared with 414,000 in the prior week.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) for August is also due at 8:30 a.m. Economists expect a 0.2 percent rise, compared with a 0.5 percent gain in July. Excluding volatile food and energy items, the CPI is seen up 0.2 percent a repeat of the July figure.
The New York Federal Reserve releases its Empire State Manufacturing Survey for September, also at 8:30 a.m.. Economists in a Reuters survey expected a reading of minus 4.00, compared with a minus 7.72 in August.
At 9:15 a.m. EDT, the U.S. Federal Reserve releases industrial production and capacity utilization data for August. Economists look for a 0.1 percent rise in production and a reading of 77.5 percent for capacity utilization. In the previous report, production rose 0.9 percent and capacity utilization was 77.5 percent.
At 10:00 a.m. EDT, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve releases its September business activity survey. Economists forecast a reading of -15.0 versus -30.7 in August.
Switzerland's UBS AG
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will give brief opening remarks before the Conference on the Regulation of Systemic Risk at 8:45 a.m. EDT.
World Bank President Robert Zoellick said Wednesday the world had entered a new economic danger zone and Europe, Japan and the United States must make tough decisions to avoid dragging down the global economy.
Diversified U.S. manufacturer Tyco International Ltd
A federal jury awarded DuPont and Co
U.S. stocks rose 1 percent in a third straight winning day Wednesday after European leaders displayed new urgency in efforts to contain the euro zone debt crisis.
(Reporting by Angela Moon; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)