June 22, 2015 / 9:20 PM / 2 years ago

U.S. stock futures edge up on hopes for Greek deal

A man walks under an electronic information board at the London Stock Exchange in the City of London January 2, 2013. REUTERS/Paul Hackett

TOKYO (Reuters) - U.S. stock futures rose in early Asian trading on Tuesday, bolstered by hopes that Greece’s latest budget proposals would stave off a debt default and lead to a deal with lenders later this week.

European Council President Donald Tusk called the Greek proposals “a positive step forward,” and said the aim was to have Eurogroup finance ministers approve a cash-for-reform package on Wednesday evening, and put it to euro zone leaders for final endorsement on Thursday morning.

Still, some cautioned that steps in a positive direction did not guarantee an eventual solution to Greece’s debt crisis.

“Although momentum appears to have turned positive, if there is no progress on negotiations for a programme extension before the 30 June deadline, the ECB may have to increase haircuts on Greek assets, which could, in turn, precipitate the need for capital controls,” strategists at Barclays said.

The euro EUR= was steady on the day at $1.1343, still shy of its one-month high of $1.1440 hit on Thursday. The dollar was also nearly flat on the day against the yen at 123.36 JPY=.

U.S. stock futures ESc1 rose about 0.1 percent after Wall Street marked solid gains on Monday, with the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC closing at a record high.

The Nikkei futures NIYU5 contract in Chicago was trading about 0.2 percent higher.

Stocks gained even as upbeat U.S. data backed the view that the U.S. Federal Reserve is on track to raise interest rates as early as September,

The National Association of Realtors said existing home sales rose to their highest in five-and-a-half years, increasing 5.1 percent to an annual rate of 5.35 million units, and adding to evidence that U.S. economic momentum picked up in the second quarter after this year’s sluggish start.

Yields on both German Bunds and U.S. Treasuries rose as prices fell in line with less demand for safe-haven fixed income assets. Expectations of higher U.S. interest rates this year also weighed on U.S. debt prices. The benchmark U.S. 10-year note yield US10YT=RR was last at 2.37 percent, compared to its U.S. close of 2.36 percent.

Chinese markets will be a main focus of Tuesday’s Asian session, after they were closed for a public holiday on Monday.

China’s main stock indexes had their worst week since the global financial crisis of 2008, with both the CSI300 index .CSI300 of the largest listed companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen and the Shanghai Composite Index .SSEC plunging over 13 percent for the week.

Later on Tuesday, the HSBC China Flash PMI for June will provide the latest clue on the strength of China’s factory activity.

In commodities trading, U.S. crude futures CLc1 slipped about 0.3 percent to $60.18 a barrel.

Editing by Richard Pullin

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