Wall Street set to open flat after Christmas

By By Yashaswini SwamynathanMarketsReuters

Wall Street looked set to open little changed on Tuesday after the Christmas holiday weekend, even as the Dow Jones industrial average inches towards 20,000.

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Small gains in oil prices supported futures. U.S. crude was up 0.4 percent at $53.24, while Brent crude steadied at $55 as a deal to limit supply came into effect on Sunday, boosting expectations of higher prices. [O/R]

The Dow Jones industrial average marked its seventh straight week of gains on Friday, feeding on optimism that President-elect Donald Trump's plans for deregulation and infrastructure spending would bolster the economy.

Investors are awaiting new catalysts that would help the index breach the 20,000 mark before the year end.

"The first day of trading in the final week of 2016 is not likely to reverse form last week's trading sessions," Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial wrote in a note.

Dow e-minis <1YMc1> were up 3 points, or 0.02 percent at 8:26 a.m. ET, with 7,018 contracts changing hands.

S&P 500 e-minis were up 1 point, or 0.04 percent, with 28,737 contracts traded.

Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 5.5 points, or 0.11 percent, on volume of 5,595 contracts.

A report is expected to show that the consumer confidence index rose to 109 in December, after hitting 107.1 the previous month. The data is due at 10:00 a.m. ET (1500 GMT).

Global markets made small gains on data that showed Chinese industry racked up its strongest profit growth in three months in November, suggesting the world's second-largest economy was improving.

Biogen shares rose 2.25 percent to $294 in light premarket trading after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Friday approved its drug to treat spinal muscular atrophy, the leading genetic cause of death in infants.

Ionis Pharma , which discovered the drug licensed to Biogen, was up 6.5 percent at $56.90.

Seattle Genetics Inc plunged 12.7 percent to $54 after saying that four people had died in trials testing its experimental cancer drug, prompting the FDA to impose a clinical hold on the company's early-stage trials.

(Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva)