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Futures trade slightly lower; Washington Post jumps

U.S. stock index futures were slightly lower Tuesday with investors looking for fresh catalysts to further propel the recent market gains that pushed major averages to record highs.

Stocks finished in negative territory in light-volume trading Monday, with the Dow and S&P 500 retreating from record levels, while the Nasdaq eked out a gain to close at a fresh 13-year high.

The small-cap Russell 2000 hit a new all-time high Monday, while the VIX, a measure of market volatility, slid to a five month low of 11.84.

Among earnings, Michael Kors spiked higher after the luxury retailer posted earnings that nearly doubled, thanks to gains in Europe and roll-out of shops within department stores.

Fossil surged after the fashion accessory maker posted better-than-expected earnings and lifted its full-year outlook.

Meanwhile, American Eagle Outfitters tumbled after the teen apparel retailer said its second-quarter profit will likely be less than half of what Wall Street was expecting, citing weak sales and lower margins. Rivals Abercrombie & Fitch and Aeropostale also declined.

Disney, 21st Century Fox, Zillow and Office Max are among notable companies slated to post results after the closing bell.

Washington Post soared after Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos agreed to buy the publishing company's newspaper assets for $250 million.

IBM slipped after Credit Suisse downgraded the tech giant to "underperform" from "neutral" and cut its price target on the Dow component to $175 from $200, saying organic growth would be challenging in the future.

On the economic front, the U.S. trade deficit fell 22.4 percent to $34.2 billion in June, narrowing to its lowest level in more than 3-1/2 years, according to the Commerce Department. Economists polled by Reuters had expected the trade deficit to narrow to $43.5 billion.

The Treasury Department is scheduled to auction $32 billion in three-year notes with the results available shortly after 1pm ET.

Meanwhile, comments from Chicago Fed President Charles Evans at 1 p.m. will be closely watched for any hint of when the central bank might begin tapering its bond purchasing program.

(Read More: S&P on the road to 2,000: Strategist)

In Europe, shares were slightly higher on Tuesday following more upbeat data for the U.K.

(Read More: U.S. service sector growth jumps in July as new orders surge: ISM)

A report published by the British Retail Consortium showed U.K. retailers enjoyed their best July in six years. It followed better-than-expected services purchasing managers' index data on Monday, which revealed the sector grew at its fastest pace in more than six years last month.

In European earnings, French bank Credit Agricole reported a more than twelve fold gain in quarterly profit, pushing shares higher.

Meanwhile Japan's benchmark index reversing earlier losses to rally 1 percent as the yen weakened, while the rest of Asian stocks were mixed in choppy trade.

Australia's benchmark index was little changed after the Reserve Bank of Australia's policy decision. It cut interest rates by 25 basis points to a record low of 2.5 percent on, as widely expected. It marks the eighth rate cut since November 2011 when the central bank first acknowledged a growth slowdown as the country's decade-long mining boom began to fade.

—By CNBC's JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC)

Coming Up This Week:

TUESDAY: Fed's Evan speaks, 3-yr note auction; Earnings from Disney, 21st Century Fox, Office Max, Zillow
WEDNESDAY: Mortgage applications, Gallup US job creation index, oil inventories, Fed's Plosser speaks, 10-yr note auction, Fed's Pianalto speaks, consumer credit; Earnings from Duke Energy, Ralph Lauren, Time Warner, Wendy's, AOL, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Groupon, Mondelez Int'l, Tesla Motors, Transocean
THURSDAY: Jobless claims, natural gas inventories, Fed balance sheet/money supply, chain store sales; Earnings from Rio Tinto, Dean Foods, T-Mobile, Lions Gate Entertainment, Nvidia, Priceline.com, Annie's
FRIDAY: Wholesale trade

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