Stock index futures pointed to a higher open on Wall Street on Monday ahead of key housing data.

* At 4:10 a.m. EDT futures for the S&P 500 were 0.7 percent, Dow Jones futures were up 0.8 percent and Nasdaq 100 futures were up 0.8 percent.

* Fears over the swine flu outbreak eased over the weekend as the Mexican health ministry announced its flu epidemic had passed the worst and experts said the virus might be no more severe than normal flu, although it could still have an impact on world health.

* Renewed worries over banks could weigh on the market. The Financial Times reported, citing people close to the situation, that Bank of America Corp is working on plans to raise more than $10 billion in fresh capital, even as it and Citigroup Inc launch last-ditch attempts to convince the U.S. government they do not need to bolster their balance sheets.

* Shares in Bank of America traded in Frankfurt were down 4.4 percent while shares in Citigroup traded in Frankfurt were down 1.3 percent.

* Warren Buffett attacked the government's stress tests of 19 large U.S. banks, saying they failed to properly assess the industry's health, and that he would buy more shares in three big banks in which Berkshire Hathaway Inc is already an investor.

* Asian shares rose to a seven-month peak on Monday, propelled by confidence the global economy is recovering faster than expected and on a further jump in Taiwanese shares on hopes for an influx of Chinese investment.

* European stocks were up 0.6 percent in early trade, buoyed by renewed hopes for the global economy, but volumes were thin as UK markets were closed for a holiday.

* On the macro front, investors were eagerly awaiting U.S. monthly pending home sales data for insight on the health of the housing market.

* China's manufacturing sector posted its best performance in nine months in April, a private survey showed on Monday, offering fresh evidence the global economy may be picking up from its sharpest slump in six decades.

* The auto industry will be in focus after Italy's Fiat SpA said it could seek a merger of its auto group with General Motors Corp's Europe unit, then spin off the combined company and list it. Fiat Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne, fresh from a partnership with ailing U.S. automaker Chrysler, will meet German government ministers on Monday to discuss a bid for German car maker Opel, part of GM Europe.

* American International Group Inc is close to selling its Japanese headquarters for about $1 billion and the expected buyer is a Japanese insurance company, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

* Japanese markets were closed on Monday for a public holiday.

* U.S. stocks gained ground on Friday as rising oil prices boosted energy shares and fresh economic data suggested key parts of the economy could be stabilizing.

(Reporting by Blaise Robinson; Editing by Greg Mahlich)