Futures up as oil prices rise for fourth day
By Abhiram Nandakumar
(Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures rose on Wednesday as crude oil prices increased for the fourth day in a row, with Brent crude touching its highest level in a more than a month.
* Brent crude and U.S. light crude were up nearly 2 percent, with Brent touching $52.99, after data showed a fall in U.S. stockpiles and inventories after two years of surplus. [O/R]
* Shares of Dow components Exxon and Chevron were up more than 1 percent premarket.
* Global stocks were also boosted by mining and energy shares as investors bought into the prospect of continued support from the world's central banks.
* Expectations that the Federal Reserve will lift interest rates off near-zero levels this year are fading, with concerns mounting about slowing global growth and its effect on corporate results.
* S&P 500 companies are expected to report a 4.2 percent fall in third-quarter profit, the biggest decline in six years, according to Thomson Reuters data.
* U.S. stocks closed lower on Tuesday, snapping a five-day winning streak, led by a rout in healthcare and biotech stocks.
* Yum Brands slumped 16.3 percent to $69.79 after it cut its full-year profit forecast due to a slower-than-expected recovery in China and a strong dollar. Continued...