Stock futures point to a positive beginning Friday but data on consumer spending and sentiment, and to a lesser extent, the geopolitical situation in Ukraine could provide direction to the trading session.
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 0.24 percent while futures on the S&P 500 were up 0.31 percent and those on the Nasdaq were up 0.43 percent. On Thursday, the Dow slipped 0.03 percent while the S&P 500 fell 0.19 percent and the Nasdaq dropped 0.54 percent.
Data on personal income and consumer spending for February are due at 8:30 a.m. EDT while the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index for March is due at 9:55 a.m.
In Europe, markets were upbeat with the Stoxx Europe 600 index trading up 0.68 percent while the FTSE 100 was up 0.4 percent. Germany’s DAX-30 was up 0.98 percent while France's CAC-40 rose 0.52 percent.
In Asia, Japan's Nikkei-225 rose 0.5 percent while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 climbed 0.31 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng soared 1.06 percent while the Shanghai Composite slipped 0.24 percent. South Korea’s Kospi inched up 0.15 percent and India’s BSE Sensex rose 0.57 percent.