Wall Street was set for a higher open on Wednesday, boosted by better-than-expected data on the labor market and a handful of positive earnings reports.
Data showed private employers added 42,000 jobs in July, better than economists' forecast of 40,000.
The data pushed stock index futures into positive territory, offsetting earlier weakness in global shares amid jitters over the strength of an economic recovery.
The fact that it was better than expected is a good sign, but it's more of the same of what we're seeing in the jobs market, said Michael O'Rourke, chief market strategist at BTIG LLC in New York.
What we need is private payroll growth. We're getting it modestly, but we need it to accelerate.
Better-than-expected corporate earnings from Time Warner inc
S&P 500 futures rose 1.3 points and were above 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 gained 17 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 7 points.
The ADP report is often looked at as a harbinger of the monthly nonfarm payrolls figure, which is due Friday. The government report is expected to show the economy lost 65,000 jobs in July, compared with a loss of 125,000 jobs the month before, while private payrolls are expected to show a rise of 90,000.
Electronic Arts Inc
Sirius XM Radio Inc's
Still to come, the ISM nonmanufacturing index for July is due at 10 a.m. EDT and is expected to show a reading of 53.0 versus 53.8 in the previous month, according to a Reuters poll.
Stocks slipped Tuesday after disappointing corporate results and data on consumer spending and housing.
Even so, the S&P 500 held above its 200-day moving average of around 1,114, a potential signal of continued market strength.
The index closed just below the 1,121 mark, a resistance level that represents the midpoint between the historic high reached in October 2007 and the 12-year closing low hit in March 2009.
Wall Street has been consolidating gains following a nearly 7 percent advance in July, the best month in a year.
(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)