Stock index futures were mostly lower on Wednesday ahead of durable goods and new home sales data and one day after upbeat consumer and housing indicators helped lift shares to 2009 highs.
The Commerce Department will release July durable goods orders at 8:30 a.m. EDT. Economists in a Reuters survey expect a rise of 3.0 percent in July versus a 2.2 percent decline in June.
New home sales data for July is due at 10 a.m. EDT. Economists in a Reuters survey forecast a total of 390,000 annualized units, compared with 384,000 in June.
Durable goods orders and new home sales will serve as added barometers of the economic recovery. If these numbers come in better than anticipated, it could continue to add fuel to the bullish fire, said Andre Bakhos, president of Princeton Financial Group in Princeton, New Jersey.
S&P 500 futures fell 2.1 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 fell 13 points. But Nasdaq 100 futures were up 1.75 points.
U.S. mortgage applications rose for a second straight week, with demand for home refinancing loans rising to its highest level since early June, the Mortgage Bankers Association said on Wednesday.
Crude oil rose slightly to above $72 a barrel after sliding 3 percent Tuesday after data showed a rise in U.S. crude stocks. On Tuesday, the S&P energy index <.GSPE> fell 1.4 percent.
German business sentiment advanced for a fifth month running in August to its highest level since September 2008, according to the Munich-based Ifo think tank's business climate index.
U.S. stocks rose Tuesday as the economic data and reappointment of Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke reassured investors and offset concerns about red ink in the federal budget.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 30.01 points, or 0.32 percent, to 9,539.29. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> added 2.43 points, or 0.24 percent, to 1,028.00. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> rose 6.25 points, or 0.31 percent, to 2,024.23.
(Writing by Rodrigo Campos; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)