US stocks set for a positive open after sharp decline

U.S. stock index futures were slightly higher ahead of Wednesday's open, as investors tried to shrug off concerns following a testimony by the chair of the Federal Reserve.

Around 8:30 a.m. ET, Dow futures were up 24 points, indicating a rise of 54.97 points at the open. The Nasdaq and S&P 500 futures also pointed to a relatively positive open. The moves in U.S. futures came after Wall Street finished the previous trading session on a negative note.

On Tuesday, the Dow Jones industrial average sank almost 300 points after Fed Chair Jerome Powell indicated that the central bank could raise interest rates three or more times during 2018 to prevent the U.S. economy from overheating. Powell's comments consequently encouraged rates to rise in the bond market, pushing equities into the red during Tuesday's session.

As investors try to shrug off concerns about higher interest rates, a slew of events are expected to keep investors busy during today's session.

On the data front, a second estimate of fourth-quarter U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) data showed growth of 2.5 percent, in line with expectations.

At 9:45 a.m. ET, Chicago purchasing managers' index (PMI) data is due, followed by pending home sales data at 10 a.m. ET.

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Overseas, stocks in both Europe and Asia were slipping into the red during their respective sessions.

No speeches by the U.S. Federal Reserve are scheduled to take place Wednesday.