Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening bell in New York, March 14, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Futures rise as market recovery gains momentum

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Futures rise as market recovery gains momentum

U.S. stock index futures were higher on Monday as stocks continued to recover from a brutal selloff that had gripped the market for most of the year.

Global stocks rose, led by gains in Chinese shares. Top Chinese officials said on Sunday that the world’s second largest economy was showing signs of improvement.

Crude prices fell amid uncertainty about major exporters reaching an agreement to freeze production and signs of U.S. producers increasing drilling activity.

The U.S. Federal Reserve’s accommodative move last week to cut back on the number of rate hikes this year to two helped push stocks higher.

The S&P 500 on Friday turned positive for the first time in 2016, closing up 0.25 percent, recovering from a more than 10 percent fall earlier in the year.

Investors will now look for signs that the U.S. economy continues to recover, with expectations for corporate earnings improving and commodity prices edging up, even as weak global conditions casts a pall on sentiment.

Data on Monday includes U.S. existing home sales, which are expected to have dropped 2.2 percent in February. The report is due at 10 a.m. ET.

Shares of Nike were up 1.5 percent at US$63.96 premarket after JP Morgan raised its price target on the stock and added it to a focus list as a growth strategy pick.

Intel was down 1.8 percent at US$32.10, Sherwin-Williams fell 2 percent to US$283 and Transocean was down 3.3 percent at US$10.42 after rating downgrades.

Cognizant Technology was up 1.3 percent at US$60 after the company said it recommends shareholders reject a share purchase offer by TRC Capital.

Dow e-minis were up 23 points, or 0.13 percent, with 18,843 contracts changing hands.

S&P 500 e-minis were up 2.25 points, or 0.11 percent, with 124,996 contracts traded.

Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 7.5 points, or 0.17 percent, on volume of 18,129 contracts.

(Reporting by Abhiram Nandakumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Don Sebastian)

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