Gain in futures set S&P 500 for new high ahead of data

(Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures rose on Wednesday and put the S&P 500 on course to a new opening high, as investors awaited private jobs data and factory activity indicators for hints on the U.S. central bank’s policy tightening plans.

FILE PHOTO: A trader works on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., August 20, 2021. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

Energy stocks led the gains, with oil majors Chevron Corp, Exxon Mobil and Schlumberger NV rising between 0.5% and 1.1% in premarket trading as crude prices rose ahead of OPEC+ meeting. [O/R]

Rate-sensitive banks also rose with J.P.Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup up about 0.6% on support from higher bond yields.

At 7:17 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 106 points, or 0.3%, S&P 500 e-minis were up 15 points, or 0.33%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 33.75 points, or 0.22%.

Wall Street’s main indexes have scaled record highs recently, with the S&P 500 marking a solid 2.9% rise in August as investors shrugged off risks around a rise in new infections and hoped for a gradual removal of stimulus by the Federal Reserve.

The ADP report, published ahead of the government’s more comprehensive and closely watched employment report on Friday, is expected to show private payrolls rose by 613,000 in August after 330,000 gain in July. The number is due at 9:15 a.m. ET.

Separately, the Institute for Supply Management’s gauge of manufacturing sector activity is expected to have moderated to 58.6 in August from 59.5 in the previous month.

Earlier, surveys showed Asian and European factory activity lost momentum in August as the ongoing coronavirus pandemic-disrupted supply chains.

U.S-listed shares of the world’s biggest miner BHP Group dropped 1.7%, while those in China-focused mining giant Rio Tinto fell 1.2% after tepid China factory data dented copper and iron ore prices.

Shares of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger owner PVH Corp surged 7.8% after it raised its full-year earnings forecast.

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