Stock index futures pointed to a higher open for Wall Street in the first day of a new year that started with an old theme of dollar weakness boosting commodity prices as well as the broader market.
The US dollar index dropped nearly 0.5 percent in early trade as US light, sweet crude oil prices rumbled toward $81 a barrel and gold jumped past $1,100 an ounce.
Technology looked particularly strong, with the group's main barometer, the Nasdaq, set to open more than 1 percent higher.
European shares started the year higher, while Asian stocks closed mixed, eyeing economic data later in the week.
The economic calendar includes two reports to kick off the new year: the ISM's monthly manufacturing index is out at 10 am New York time, while the government releases construction spending for November at that same time. Economists see the ISM index coming in at 54.1, up slightly from November's 53.6 reading, while construction spending is seen as dropping 0.5% for November, compared to October's unchanged reading.
The earnings calendar is virtually empty today, but fourth quarter earnings season starts soon and likely will be a major influence in the markets in the weeks ahead.
In corporate news, Switzerland's Novartisis seeking to buy the portion of eye care product makerAlcon that it doesn't already own for $39.3 billion. The deal would involve acquiring a 52% stake in Alcon from Nestle.
The dispute over carriage of the Fox Networks has been resolved between Time Warner Cable and Fox parent News Corp., while customers of Cablevision remain without Food Network and HGTV, owned by Scripps, as those two parties continue a dispute over carriage rates.