Stock futures rise on strong Chinese data

By @ibtimes on

U.S. stock index futures rose on Tuesday as strong Chinese trade data eased concerns of a slowdown in the world's second-largest economy and pointed to strong global demand.

China posted an $11.4 billion trade surplus in April, nearly four times greater than expected, after exports hit a record on healthy demand and imports rose less than expected.

Microsoft Corp will be in the spotlight after a source said the blue chip is close to buying Internet telephone network Skype in an $8.5 billion deal as it seeks to regain ground on rivals such as Google Inc . Microsoft shares were little changed in early trading.

S&P 500 futures rose 5.8 points and were above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration of the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures gained 49 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 13.25 points.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd <2330.TW> and United Microelectronics Corp <2303.TW>, the world's two biggest contract chipmakers, posted slower sales growth in April after Japan's earthquake brought a supply shortfall for key materials in producing smartphones and tablets.

As earnings season winds down, investors awaited results from Dean Foods Co and Walt Disney Co .

ICSC/Goldman Sachs release weekly chain store sales at 7:45 a.m. EDT. In the previous week, sales fell 0.8 percent.

At 8:30 a.m., the Labor Department reports import-export prices for April. Economists in a Reuters survey forecast a 1.8 percent rise in imports and a 0.9 percent increase in exports.

The Commerce Department releases wholesale inventories for March at 10 a.m. EDT. Economists look for inventories to rise 1.0 percent, a repeat of the February increase.

U.S. stocks advanced on Monday as commodity-related shares rebounded from last week's collapse, masking deeper doubts about what will sustain the market's long-term strength.

(Reporting by Rodrigo Campos; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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