U.S. stock index futures pointed to a lower open on Tuesday ahead of a hectic day of data releases, following the Memorial Day holiday weekend.
Investors will keep a close eye on the data for indicators as to when the Federal Reserve could start hiking interest rates. On Friday, Fed Chair Janet Yellen suggested a hike would be appropriate this year if the economy improves. She noted that first quarter weakness was largely transitory, but that it would take several years for rates to return to normal.
On Tuesday, durable goods orders are due at 8:30 a.m. ET, followed by a number of housing market indicators, with the release of the FHFA home price index at 9:00 a.m., Case-Shiller home price indices for March, also at 9.00 a.m. ET, and new home sales figures for April at 10.00 a.m.
The Conference Board Consumer Confidence report is slated for 10.00 a.m.
U.S. Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer said market watchers focus too much on the importance of the Fed's first interest rate hike since the process of returning to a more normal level will take a few years. Fischer, speaking in Israel on Monday, said observers should instead think more about where interest rates are headed over time. He said Fed economists expect the rate will reach from 3.25 percent to 4 percent in three to four years.
Europe markets fluctuated in morning trade on Tuesday with investors reacting to earnings and concerns that Greece was finally about to default on its loan repayments.
The country needs urgent financial aid to repay a loan due next week to the International Monetary Fund and to pay wages and pensions, the government said on Monday.