Stock index futures indicated a strong opening for Wall Street Monday, helped by European markets that hit a broader-index high for the year on better-than-expected bank earnings.
Results from Barclays and HSBC pushed the banking sector in Europe higher, with UBS also gaining on the likelihood it would not pay a fine to settle its dispute with the US government over Americans suspected of trying to evade taxes by using Swiss accounts.
Among early movers, Dow component 3M gained after Goldman Sachs upgraded the stock to "buy" from "neutral."
On the economic calendar is the Institute for Supply Management's monthly read on the manufacturing sector, with the ISM Manufacturing Index out at 10 am New York time. Economists are looking for a reading of 46.5, which is below the 50 mark that indicates an expanding manufacturing sector, but above June's 44.8 level.
The government is also out with construction spending figures for June, expected to show a drop of 0.6 percent from the prior month.
July car sales figures don't come out until later, but Ford tells the Wall Street Journal it will post its first year-over-year increase in almost two years.
The "Cash For Clunkers" program is helping all automakers, although the program is running out of cash and may have to be suspended if the Senate doesn't approve a bill to give the program an additional $2 billion in funding.
The earnings calendar slows down a bit from last week's frenetic pace.