Futures gained Wednesday after finishing lower for the third-straight session as optimism about the global economy improved despite the continuing euro zone debt crisis.
China's economy grew faster than expected in the second quarter as the nation's GDP rose 9.5 percent from a year earlier, exceeding expectations for 9.4 percent, helped by roubust domestic consumption and investment.
Stocks sold off Tuesday after Moody's downgraded Ireland's rating to junk statusand said the country is likely to follow Greece in needing a second bailout.
Meanwhile, the minutes of the Federal Reserve's meeting in June also suggested some officials were prepared to take further monetary easing measures in order to stimulate the economy and appearing to take a wait-and-see stance on interest rates.
Fed chairman Ben Bernanke is set to testify before the House of Representatives at 10am ET. One of the most likely subjects will be why the Fed’s stimulus measures to date have not been more effective in bringing down unemployment. (CNBC.com will live-stream this event.)
On the tech front, Apple gained after Citigroup raises its price target on the iPhone maker to $450 from $435. Meanwhile, China Telecom said it plans to offer the iPhone in China by year-end, the second operator to do so in the world's largest cell phone market.
ITG plunged after the financial technology firm said it plans to reduce costs by cutting jobs and reducing infrastructure to deal with weak institutional equity trading volumes.
ASML tumbled after the Dutch semiconductor firm said its customers are holding back on new orders as sales of computers and mobile phones slow, joining the latest list of chipmakers including Microchip Tech and Novellus , warning over weak consumer demand. Meanwhile, Citigroup cut its price target on Microchip to $36 from $40.
Electronic Arts said it is buying PopCap Gamesin a deal worth up to $1.3 billionas the video-game publisher tries to ramp up its social and casual games portfolio and better compete with Zynga according to a report from Reuters.
Netflix hiked monthly pricesfor customers who use both its mail and online services, a move that could steer users toward its growing streaming service.
Among earnings, Capital One slipped even after the credit-card provider posted larger-than-expected quarterly profit and said it would raise $2 billion via stock offering to fund the acquisition of ING's
Yum and Marriott are scheduled to release reports after-the-bell.