US Markets

US stock futures point higher ahead of Fed, boosted by earnings


U.S. stock-index futures rose on Tuesday after a gauge of home prices came in better than expected, as investors also reacted to positive earnings a day ahead of a U.S. Federal Reserve policy decision.

U.S. single-family home prices climbed more than expected in May, although the pace of monthly increases showed signs of slowing, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan cities.

Read MoreUS metro home prices climb 1.1 percent in May

Dow-listed pharmaceutical giants Merck and Pfizer posted earnings that beat Wall Street's estimates by a mile. Shipping giant UPS, however, disappointed, with the company's quarterly profit falling sharply from the year-earlier period.

Read More UPS profit hit by retirement liabilities

The Fed's regular monetary policy announcement is due on Wednesday, with the central bank expected to cut monthly asset purchases by another $10 billion to $25 billion. U.S. second-quarter gross domestic product figures will also be announced during the day.

"Employment growth has been stronger than expected in recent months. But wage inflation remains low, business and housing investment numbers have softened most recently, and core inflation has moved sideways," said Deutsche Bank's Jim Reid in a morning research note.

"On balance, this is not a picture that will get a data-driven Fed excited."

Tuesday will be a big day for both U.S. and European second-quarter earnings, with around 45 companies due to report.

Read MoreHerbalife tumbles after earnings miss expectations

Reports from American Express and Twitter are expected after the bell.

Russia-Ukraine turmoil remains in focus, after President Barack Obama and European leaders on Monday announced another round of sanctions against Moscow, with the penalties targeting the country's financial, defense and energy sectors.

Read MoreBP: Russia still key as production set to dip

Just how badly can geopolitics dent the US rally?

Asian stocks rose for a second session on Tuesday on hopes that growth in the world's second-biggest economy has stabilized. Investors have turned increasingly optimistic on China in recent sessions on improving economic data such as HSBC's July factory activity report. With that in mind, they will eye China's official purchasing manager's index, due later this week.