Stock index futures rose on Wednesday as a positive outlook from Kraft Foods Inc revived hopes of a strong earnings season, and Chinese Internet search engine Baidu Inc surged on news rival Google Inc may pull out of China.
The market is anticipating a fairly supportive earnings season for current pricing, said Peter Kenny, managing director at Knight Equity Markets in Jersey City, New Jersey.
S&P 500 futures rose 2.6 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 rose 12 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 2.25 points.
Concern about Chinese moves to cool the economy by increasing reserve requirements at local banks dented commodity prices, as copper hit a two-week low and crude oil fell to around $80 per barrel, threatening to weigh on shares of U.S. commodity and industrial companies.
The U.S. Federal Reserve releases its Beige Book of regional economic conditions at 2 p.m. EST, and investors will scour the data for insights into the Fed's thinking on the economy.
(Editing by Padraic Cassidy)