U.S. stock index futures pointed to a slightly higher open on Thursday, as investors tried to shake off concerns surrounding the U.S. administration and switched focus to the monetary policy symposium at Jackson Hole.
Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 55 points, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures advanced 5.25 points and 19.25 points, respectively.
Thursday marks the start of the 2017 Economic Policy Symposium on "Fostering a Dynamic Global Economy" at Jackson Hole, where leading central bankers are set to meet.
Over the three-day event, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and European Central Bank President Mario Draghi are both set to speak, with investors watching the event closely for any indications when it comes to monetary policy outlook.
Kansas City Fed President Esther George told CNBC on Thursday that the economy was strong enough to handle more rate hikes, despite recent readings of weak inflation.
"I think we should continue with the gradual rate path," she said from the annual symposium. "While we haven't hit 2 percent, I'm reminded that 2 percent is a target over the long term, and in the context of a growing economy, of jobs being added, I don't think it's an issue that we should be particularly concerned about unless we see something change."
Looking to politics, earlier this week U.S. President Donald Trump said he'd be willing to go as far as letting the government shut down, at a rally on Tuesday night, if he wasn't able to have his border wall with Mexico funded.
On Thursday, Trump tweeted:
I requested that Mitch M & Paul R tie the Debt Ceiling legislation into the popular V.A. Bill (which just passed) for easy approval. They...
...didn't do it so now we have a big deal with Dems holding them up (as usual) on Debt Ceiling approval. Could have been so easy-now a mess!
While the news weighed on U.S. stocks during Wednesday's trade, international investors appeared to dismiss and shake off concerns surrounding this, with Asia closing mostly higher and Europe trading higher on Thursday.