US STOCKS-Futures rise with Dow record within sight
NEW YORK, March 5 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures rose on Tuesday, with the Dow within reach of a record closing high, as investors awaited data on the U.S. services sector.
* Also boosting equities was China's announcement of its 2013 government spending plans, with outgoing Premier Wen Jiabao announcing record spending that will sustain growth in the country. China's new rulers will focus on consumer-led growth to narrow the gap between rich and poor.
* The Dow on Monday closed within 40 points of its all-time closing high. Stocks have rallied since the start of the year as investors continue to view equities as more attractively valued than other asset classes.
* Loose monetary policy around the world has also driven risk assets. Federal Reserve vice chair Janet Yellen on Monday backed the current aggressive monetary stimulus.
* A report on the vast U.S. services sector is expected to show the pace of growth was relatively unchanged in February, with economists looking for the Institute for Supply Management's non-manufacturing PMI index to dip to 55.0 from 55.2 in January. The report is due at 10:00 am (1500 GMT).
* Markit's Eurozone Composite PMI, a broad gauge of activity at thousands of companies across the 17-nation bloc, fell to 47.9 in February from 48.6 in January. The reading was better than expected, although still below the 50 mark dividing growth from contraction.
* S&P 500 futures rose 3.3 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 24 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 9 points.
* Japan's aviation regulators said there are still "several steps" required before any battery fix for Boeing Co's troubled Dreamliner jet can be approved. Boeing said this week it was ready to make fixes to its batteries after regulators have approved the proposed solution.
* The U.S. Department of Justice is seeking additional details of AMR Corp and US Airways Group Inc's proposed $11 billion merger which aims to create the world's largest airline.