earnings, data and trade concerns in focus
At around 7 a.m. ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose 91 points, indicating an upbeat open of 91.82 points, with S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures also posting gains before the open.
The S&P 500 was just 0.8 percent away from reaching an all-time high of 2,872.87, set on Jan. 26. The Nasdaq Composite was also within 1 percent of a record high, while the Dow was more than 4.2 percent away from reaching an all-time high.
The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX), considered to be the best fear gauge in the market, fell to 11.02, around its lowest level since January.
Stock futures were buoyed by positive sentiment overseas. Markets in the Asian-Pacific and European regions were mostly higher on Tuesday, as fresh corporate earnings came out and concerns surrounding trade tensions alleviated somewhat.
Dow-component Disney and Papa John's are scheduled to report earnings after the close. Mallinckrodt reported better-than-expected earnings before the bell, sending its shares up by nearly 9 percent.
The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) is scheduled to be released at 10 a.m. ET, followed by consumer credit at 3 p.m. ET. The latest economic data come just days after July's jobs report came in below market forecasts, with total nonfarm payrolls rising by 157,000, below the 190,000 predicted by economists polled by Reuters.
While corporate and economic news is likely to keep investors busy on Tuesday, news surrounding trade is likely to dwell at the back of investors' minds.
Last week, China said it was ready to retaliate with tariffs on around $60 billion worth of U.S. goods, ranging from 5 percent to 25 percent; just days after the U.S. administration revealed that President Donald Trump had spoken with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and asked him to consider increasing the proposed levies on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods up to 25 percent, from 10 percent.
Chinese state media claimed in editorials over recent days that the Asian nation and its counter-response to America has been "restrained" and "rational," in light of the levies that have been threatened.
Meantime, oil prices ticked higher Tuesday, as renewed U.S. sanctions on Iran are expected by many to help tighten global supply; Reuters reported.