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Futures pare gains amid Draghi remarks

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

U.S. stock index futures indicated a higher open on Thursday as traders eyed a meeting of the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, Germany.

ECB President Mario Draghi said he didn't anticipate need to reduce rates further, but new facts can change the situation, Dow Jones reported.

The euro came off session lows to trade above $1.09 as of 9 a.m. ET. Treasury yields extended gains, with the 2-year yield near 0.93 percent.

Dow futures traded about 80 points higher after earlier adding more than 150 points after the ECB cut the deposit rate to negative 0.4 percent from minus 0.3 percent, charging banks more to keep their money with the central bank. The refinancing rate was also cut, down 5 basis points to 0.00 percent.

The central bank also expanded its asset purchase program from 60 billion euros to 80 billion euros a month, beginning in April.

The U.S. dollar index traded nearly 1 percent higher, with the euro falling below $1.09.

Treasury yields turned higher, with the 2-year yield briefly above 0.9 percent and the 10-year around 1.89 percent.

European stocks extended gains to trade more than 1 percent higher.

The central bank was expected to cut its deposit rate further into negative territory and boost asset purchases in an effort to spark euro zone inflation and encourage growth.

Weekly jobless claims declined 18,000 to a seasonally adjusted 259,000 for the week ended March 5, the lowest reading since mid-October, the Labor Department said in a Reuters report on Thursday. The prior week's claims were revised to show 1,000 fewer applications received than previously reported.

The Federal budget is scheduled for release at 2:00 p.m.

On the earnings front, El Pollo Loco is among companies set to report today.

In oil markets, Brent crude traded at $40.84 a barrel, down 0.56 percent, while U.S. crude was up slightly around $38.40 a barrel.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei closed up 1.26 percent, while the Shanghai Composite in China closed 2.03 percent lower.

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Reuters and CNBC's Patti Domm contributed to this report