MARKET SNAPSHOT: U.S. Stocks Eye Opening Gains As North Korea Pulls Back On Guam Threat

By Sara Sjolin, MarketWatchFeaturesDow Jones Newswires

Retail sales are in focus ahead of the open

Wall Street was set for another positive open on Tuesday, as tensions between the U.S. and North Korea continued to recede after Kim Jong Un pulled back on his threat to attack Guam.

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Investors were also waiting for a raft of U.S. data, including a closely watched report on retail sales.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 45 points, or 0.2%, to 21,996, while those for the S&P 500 index gained 3.75 points, or 0.2%, to 2,467.25. Futures for the Nasdaq-100 index climbed 14.25 points, or 0.2%, to 5,924.25.

The gains come after an upbeat close on Monday (, when the S&P 500 index gained 1% for the first time in three months as the verbal standoff between the U.S. and North Korea cooled off. The Dow average ended 0.6% higher, while the Nasdaq Composite Index rallied 1.3%.

Tensions between the two nations eased further on Tuesday, with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un deciding not to launch a threatened missile attack on Guam (, according to Pyongyang's state media. The leader, however, warned that he could change his mind "if the Yankees persist in their extremely dangerous reckless actions."

The isolated nation said last week it would complete its plans to strike Guam in mid-August.

"It will be difficult for markets to fully recover their poise until we're out of this midmonth window with no new provocations (or worse)," said Deutsche Bank strategists in a note.

"However, every day that no news breaks should help markets recover to where they were before last Monday evening's 'fire and fury' tweet after the earlier Washington Post story that Pyongyang has produced a nuclear warhead small enough to fit inside one of its missiles," they added.

U.S. President Donald Trump last week said he would unleash "fire and fury like the world has never seen" if North Korea continued to threaten the U.S.

The dollar welcomed the de-escalation of the conflict on Tuesday. The ICE Dollar Index rose 0.3% to 93.652, adding to a 0.4% gain from Monday.

Meanwhile, a spotlight will be thrown on Trump's domestic agenda on Tuesday.

"Trump is preparing to sign an executive order on infrastructure projects today, which could give another boost to the U.S. stocks, as he has promised to spend up to $1 trillion to reinforce U.S. infrastructure," said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, senior market analyst at London Capital Group, in a note.

Economic news: A deluge of data is set for release Tuesday morning. Retail sales for July are due at 8:30 a.m., and economists are expecting a 0.4% rise, compared with a 0.2% drop in the previous month.

The import price index for July will also be out at 8:30 a.m., along with the Empire State manufacturing survey for August.

At 10 a.m., a sentiment gauge for August from National Association of Home Builders is due, as are U.S. figures on business inventories in June.

See:MarketWatch's economic calendar (

There are no Federal Reserve officials scheduled to speak on Tuesday.

Stock movers: Shares of General Electric Co.(GE) lost 0.5% in thin premarket trade after a Securities and Exchange Commission filing late Monday showed Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc.(BRKA) (BRKA) had dropped its position the conglomerate (

Berkshire also trimmed positions in International Business Machines Corp.(IBM) , Costco Wholesale Corp.(COST) and Sirius XM Holdings Inc.(SIRI) , while buying shares of Synchrony Financial(SYF) .

VF Corp.(VFC) , the parent of clothing brands such as North Face and Timberland, could move after it late Monday reached a deal to buy Williamson-Dickie Manufacturing Co ( for $820 million in cash.

Ahead of the bell, Home Depot Inc.(HD) , Coach Inc.(COH) , Dick's Sporting Goods Inc.(DKS) and TJX Cos.(TJX) are expected to release earnings.

Other markets: Stocks in Asia closed mostly higher (, while European markets marched higher ( on continued North Korea relief.

Oil prices were slightly higher, while gold prices and most other metals headed lower.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 15, 2017 05:49 ET (09:49 GMT)