Wall Street was set to open little changed on Tuesday as earnings from blue chips like Ford extended optimism about a strong earnings season, but the debt ceiling stalemate kept investors nervous.
Stocks fell in the previous session as U.S. lawmakers remained deadlocked over a deal to raise the government's debt ceiling to avoid a default. Investors were hopeful a compromise could be crafted by the August 2 deadline.
U.S. President Barack Obama took to the airwaves Monday night to rally public support for a package proposed by Democrats, warned that failure to make a deal would severely hurt the nation.
In earnings news, Ford Motor Co
But 3M Co
Corporate America is still pretty healthy. Debt talks may take a while, but we think eventually there will be a deal, said Catherine Avery, the head of Catherine Avery Investment Management in New Canaan, Connecticut.
In light of what's been going on, markets are holding up surprisingly well, but you have to have faith that we will come to a deal. Otherwise we might as well just throw in the towel.
S&P 500 futures dipped 0.2 point and were in line with 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 were down 13 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures were off 1.5 points.
U.S. single-family home prices were unchanged in May on a monthly basis and were revised to show an increase in April, according to the Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller composite index. Market reaction was muted.
At 10:00 a.m. EDT (1400 GMT), the Conference Board reports on July consumer confidence. Economists expect a reading of 56.0, compared with 58.5 in June.
Also coming at 10 a.m., the Commerce Department releases new home sales for June. Economists forecast a total of 320,000 annualized units, compared with 319,000 in May.
Resource-related stocks will be in focus as copper prices rose for the first time in five sessions on a weaker dollar. Other key base metals also advanced.
U.S. specialty finance company Orchid Island Capital Inc postponed its initial public offering due to market conditions.
(Reporting by Angela Moon; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)