U.S. stock futures were positioned to open with sizable gains as the pivotal Federal Open Market Committee two-day meeting gets set to begin.
Improvement in the Empire State manufacturing index came in above expectations and European equities were higher for the first time in six days. The core U.S. Consumer Price Index in November rose 0.2%, pushing the CPI up 2% for the year. The housing market index later this morning is forecast to rise.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.6%, Standard & Poor's 500 futures gained 0.7% and the Nasdaq 100 futures were up 0.7%.
In global markets, the FTSE 100 was up 1.7% and the DAX 30 gained 2.2%. Asian stocks were lower, with the Nikkei down 1.7%, Hang Seng down 0.2% and the Shanghai Composite down 0.3%.
Lumber liquidators ( LL ) was a big mover pre-bell, rising 30% after hedge fund manager Whitney Tilson covered his $2.3 million short position. SiriusXM ( SIRI ) gained almost 5% after announcing a new 12-year deal with Howard Stern. Losers included 3M Company ( MMM ), which fell 4.5% after the company lowered its guidance, and Neothetics lost 78% of its value after its LIPO-202 phase 3 trial didn't meet primary or secondary endpoints.
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