MARKET SNAPSHOT: U.S. Stocks Set To Rise, With Benchmarks On Pace For May Gain

By Barbara Kollmeyer, MarketWatch Features Dow Jones Newswires

Oil prices under fresh pressure

Continue Reading Below

U.S. equity indexes on Wednesday were poised to rise modestly, putting them in position to close out May with solid gains, despite a drag from the beleaguered crude-oil market.

Investors were awaiting a report on pending-home sales and the Chicago purchasing-managers index.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose 30 points, or 0.1%, to 21,046, while those for the S&P 500 index gained 4.05 points, or 0.2%, to 2,414.75. Nasdaq-100 index futures rose 16.50 points, or 0.3%, to 5,808.50.

Need to know:Tech rally overdone? The case for buying other stock sectors now (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/tech-rally-overdone-the-case-for-buying-other-stock-sectors-now-2017-05-31)

U.S. stocks finished modestly lower on Tuesday driven by losses for energy shares, which halted a seven-session streak of gains for the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite . Those two indexes slipped 0.1% each, while the Dow industrials fell 0.2%.

Continue Reading Below

Read:This money manager sees no end in sight for bull market (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/this-money-manager-sees-no-end-in-sight-for-bull-market-2017-05-30)

Still, a handful of big tech names, such as Tesla Inc. (TSLA) and Google-parent Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL) finished at record levels (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/microsoft-and-alphabet-on-track-for-record-closes-as-big-tech-hold-gains-2017-05-30) on Tuesday.

Energy shares may again be under pressure on Wednesday, as oil prices pushed further south, (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/oil-prices-extend-losses-as-concern-grows-over-still-heavy-global-supply-2017-05-31) recently down 2.2% to $48.57 a barrel.

With one session left to go of the month, the Nasdaq has been the best-performing major index for May, up 2.6%, followed by a 1.2% gain for the S&P 500. Both indexes are set for their best monthly percentage gains since February 2017. The Dow is up 0.4%, its best monthly performance since March.

Data ahead: The Chicago purchasing managers index for May will be released at 9:45 a.m. Eastern Time, followed by April pending-home sales at 10 a.m. Eastern. The Federal Reserve's Beige Book is due at 2 p.m. Eastern.

Among Fed speakers, Dallas Fed President Rob Kaplan is due to speak at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York at 8 a.m. Eastern. San Francisco Fed President John Williams will give a speech on "global economic and financial challenges" at the Bank of Korea International Conference 2017 in Seoul, South Korea at 8:10 p.m. Eastern.

Stocks to watch: Shares of Michael Kors Holdings Inc.(KORS) dropped 7% in premarket trading after maker of high-end accessories and clothing posted a loss for its fiscal fourth quarter (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/michael-kors-shares-slide-7-premarket-after-company-swings-to-loss-2017-05-31) and spoke of a challenging market.

Vera Bradley Inc.(VRA) is still due to report.

Other markets: Stocks in Asia had a mixed day, while Chinese equities inched higher after a gauge of manufacturing beat forecasts (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/chinas-manufacturing-beats-forecast-stays-steady-2017-05-30). European stocks traded higher. The FTSE 100 index also showed solid gains, tilting higher after trading in the red on fresh parliamentary election jitters (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/theresa-may-could-lose-majority-in-uk-election-fresh-research-finds-2017-05-31).

The pound was trading around $1.28 (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/pound-falls-again-after-pollster-predicts-may-will-lose-majority-in-election-2017-05-31), in up-and-down trade for sterling ahead of the coming U.K. election.

Gold prices were marginally higher as the dollar slumped 0.2% lower.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

May 31, 2017 07:56 ET (11:56 GMT)