* Manufacturing, pending home sales data on tap
* Futures up: Dow 70 pts, S&P 500 8.4 pts, Nasdaq 17 pts
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, Dec 1 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures rose on Tuesday as concerns over Dubai’s debt problems eased and investors awaited a host of economic data, including pending home sales.
Dubai World, the government-owned investment firm, said it will restructure about $26 billion of its estimated $59 billion in debt, reassuring investors that the emirate’s problems can be contained. For details, see [ID:nGEE5B0041]
“For the moment, It appears the Dubai concerns have quelled, giving a renewed, yet tenuous confidence,” said Andre Bakhos, president of Princeton Financial Group in North Brunswick, New Jersey.
“Today investors look to the economic calendar for continued signs that the economy is in recovery mode.”
The data will include the Institute for Supply Management’s November manufacturing index at 10 a.m. EST [1500 GMT]. Economists surveyed by Reuters expect a reading of 55.0 versus 55.7 in October, but a stronger-than-expected Chicago PMI on Monday has boosted expectations.
Also at 10 a.m., the National Association of Realtors issues October pending home sales. Economists expect a drop of 0.8 percent, compared with a 6.1 percent rise in the previous month. An improvement in the housing market is seen as key to the recovery.
S&P 500 futures SPc1 rose 8.4 points and were above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures DJc1 climbed 70 points, while Nasdaq 100 futures NDc1 gained 17 points.
In U.S. equities news, top office-products retailer Staples Inc SPLS.O reported higher-than-expected quarterly profit on Tuesday as cost cuts offset weak sales. [ID:nN30469390]
WellPoint Inc WLP.N a big Blue Cross Blue Shield health insurer, provided a full-year 2009 outlook and said it was taking a big gain after closing the sale of its NextRx drug benefit business to Express Scripts Inc (ESRX.O). [ID:nN01485995]
European shares rose about 2 percent early Tuesday, bouncing back from declines in the previous session, as fears about Dubai eased, boosting investor appetite for riskier equities. [ID:nGEE5B00P9].
The Nikkei 225 index jumped 2.4 percent while the yen tumbled after the Bank of Japan called an emergency policy review to discuss ways to boost the ailing economy. [ID:nSP2257]
U.S. stocks rose on Monday, helping the Dow post its fifth straight monthly gain.
(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)
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