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U.S. stock-index futures ticked higher as traders repositioned their portfolios after Wall Street's steepest selloff since June.
As of 8:00 a.m. ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures climbed 40 points, or 0.26%, to 15332, S&P 500 futures rose 6.5 points, or 0.38%, to 1739 and Nasdaq 100 futures advanced 11.3 points, or 0.32%, to 3441.
The S&P 500 tumbled 2.3% Monday in its heaviest selloff since June 2013. The move extended the broad-market index's year-to-date drop to 5.8%. Adding to the fearful sentiment, Japan's Nikkei 225, already in a correction, plunged 4.2% overnight as emerging-market fears swirled across global markets.
"Stocks are offside, but holding up relatively well considering the massive selloff in Japan overnight as fears over emerging-market exposure echoed around the world," said David Madden, a market analyst at IG in London, in an email. "Traders are treading lightly, not wanting to get stung if there is a sudden exodus from equities into cash or bonds."
Traders are paying particularly close attention to economic data after a key manufacturing report and monthly auto sales missed views. Economists at Goldman Sachs told clients late Monday they believe the effect of bad weather across the country might be larger-than-expected in January, weighing on the world's biggest economy.
The Commerce Department releases its gauge of factory orders for the month December at 10:00 a.m. ET. Economists expect the broad-based metric to have slid 1.7% on a month-over-month basis.
Analysts across the board said they would be paying close attention to the January jobs report, due out on Friday. The December data came in far shy of estimates, and there are concerns bad weather and the end of emergency jobless benefits could put additional pressure on the figures.
Elsewhere, U.S. crude oil futures climbed 12 cents, or 0.12%, to $96.55 a barrel. Wholesale New York Harbor gasoline fell 0.17% to $2.602 a gallon. Gold fell $5.40, or 0.43%, to $1,555 a troy ounce.