US stocks gain slightly in early trading as markets await central bank meetings

U.S. stocks are slightly higher in early trading as investors await the actions of global central banks.

The Dow Jones industrial average edged up one point, or a fraction of a percent, to 17,099 as of 9:32 a.m. Eastern time Tuesday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index edged up two points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,005. The Nasdaq gained 11 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,592.

Investors are looking ahead to central bank meetings this week in Europe and Japan, and waiting for key U.S. employment figures Friday.

The stock of Exelixis lost more than half its value in early trading. The plunge came a day after the drug developer said its potential treatment for prostate cancer fell short in late-stage research.

U.S. financial markets were closed Monday for Labor Day.