Futures on major U.S. indices point to a higher open on Wednesday with futures on the S&P 500 gaining 3.50 points, futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 23 points and Nasdaq100 futures up 7 points.
On the economic front, Consumer Price Index rose 0.2 percent in October on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. Economists estimated a 0.3 percent growth against 0.1 percent rise in the previous month. Core CPI was unchanged in October, the third month in a row with no change.
The US Commerce Department reported that privately-owned housing starts in October were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 519,000, below the revised September estimate of 588,000, and against expectations of a 600,000 annualised rate for October.
Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in October were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 550,000, up 0.5 percent above the revised September rate of 547,000, but below expectations of 570,000 permits in October.
On Tuesday, stocks plunged on concerns that Ireland might need a bailout from the European Union/IMF and a slowdown in China may hurt its demand for commodities. Irish prime minister Brian Cowen insisted in a speech to Parliament that the government will not need a cash injection and that it was taking steps to stabilize the economy to cut its high deficit.
On the earnings front, Target Corp., the No.2 discount chain in U.S. behind Walmart (WMT), reported 23 percent rise in its quarterly profit as the retailer's attractive discount schemes have drawn more shoppers to its stores. Quarterly revenue rose 2.2 percent to $15.61 billion
Target earned 74 cents per share, compared with 58 cents per share last year. Excluding a tax benefit if 6 cents per share, the company's earnings came in line with Street expectations of 68 cents, according to analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.
General Motors raised the proposed size of its IPO to 478 million shares from 365 million shares. This follows an increase in the estimated price range for the offering of common stock to $32 to $33 per share announced Tuesday.
The euro edged 0.04 percent to 1.3496 against the dollar while the greenback rose 0.09 percent against the yen.
Crude oil futures rose 0.08 percent to $84.8/barrel and gold futures pared earlier losses and are up 0.23 percent.
European stock markets are currently trading mixed with U.K. FTSE 100 down by 9.22 points, German DAX30 up by 20.35 points and French CAC 40 higher by 17.20 points.