US Markets

Futures higher; earnings, data in focus


U.S. stock-index futures traded higher on Tuesday, amid a busy day for earnings and the start of a Federal Reserve policy meeting.

Companies that posted quarterly results included 3M,Eli Lilly, Fiat Chrysler and Lockheed Martin. Apple will post earnings on Tuesday after Wall Street closes, along with AT&T, eBay and Twitter.

All eyes on Apple

Earlier in the day, oil major BP reported a pretax loss of $865 million for the first quarter of 2016.

The U.S. Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) will start its two-day meeting on Tuesday. It is not expected to raise interest rates, but may signal the possibility of doing so in June.

"The recent drift higher in 10-year Treasury yields (to 1.9 percent) and in breakeven rates (to 1.66 percent) just might prompt a marginally less dovish message than in March; a possibility which will probably give markets a slightly risk-off sense today," Kit Juckes, a strategist at Societe Generale, said in a note on Tuesday.

In economic news, durable goods orders rose a less-than-expected 0.8 percent in March after a downwardly revised 3.1 percent decline in February.

Non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending plans, were unchanged after a downwardly revised 2.7 percent decline in the prior month. These so-called core capital goods orders were previously reported to have decreased 2.5 percent in February, Reuters said.

The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Composite's year-over-year gain was 5.4 percent in February, down from 5.7 percent the prior month.

Treasury yields came off highs after hitting fresh highs going back to late March. The U.S. dollar index traded more than half a percent lower, with the euro near $1.133 and the yen at 110.89 yen against the greenback.

Other data scheduled for release include Markit services PMI and the consumer confidence index for April.

Crude futures rose on Tuesday, helped by the weaker dollar.

Saudi Arabia, OPEC's de facto leader, announced a plan on Monday to diversify its economy away from oil production.

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