Futures Rise as Gold, Oil Jump; GE Gains

Stock index futures pointed to a strong post-Labor Day opening for Wall Street on gains in commodities and merger activity.

Merger Monday is a day late this week because of the Labor Day Holiday, but it's Kraft's pursuit of Cadbury that helped drive stock market sentiment this Tuesday.

Cadburyresisted Kraft's $16.7 billion bid, and reports say Hershey may become a player to prevent Kraft or another competitor from acquiring Cadbury.

  • Dow 30: Extra-Hour Quotes
  • Pre-Markets/Futures Data
  • Also, Gold is back over $1,000 per ounce, with weakness in the U.S. dollar helping push prices higher. And oil prices were pushing towards $70 as US light sweet crude rose more than $1.60 a barrel. The UBS Commodity Index was up nearly 2 percent.

    Concurrently, the dollar hit its lowest level in nearly a year against a basket of currencies, a move that may have been sparked over concerns that the greenback's status as the world's reserve currency was in danger.

    General Electric also helped boost the market. The parent company of CNBC.com saw its shares gain more than 4 percent in premarket trading after JPMorgan upgraded the stock to overweight from neutral and raised the price target to $17 from $12.

    But shares of American International Group slipped more than 5 percent after Credit Suisse cut AIG to underperform, citing "little to no value for common equity."

    September — historically the worst month for stocks — had started off in traditional fashion with losses on the first two trading days, but the averages gained in the final two sessions before the long weekend and are poised to do so again today.

    The economic calendar is a relatively light one, although the government will be out with consumer credit figures for July at 3 pm New York time. Economists think credit will have dropped by $3.5 billion during the month.

    The first of three Treasury note and bond auctions also will take place, with $38 billion in 3-year notes set to be sold today. Results will be available shortly after 1 pm New York time.

    The Treasury will auction $20 billion in 10-year notes tomorrow and $12 billion in 30-year bonds on Thursday.

    And two surveys came out with mixed news about the U.S. economy: Manpower says the hiring outlook in the United States has slipped slightly while improving elsewhere, but another survey by market research firm Information Resources says shoppers are willing to spend more for the holidays this year than they were last year, although they still intend to look for discounts.

    - Written by Peter Schacknow, Senior Producer, CNBC Breaking News Desk