US stock futures edged higher on Monday as bargain hunters looked set to step in following a sell-off in the previous week, with better-than-expected results from Citigroup lifting sentiment.
Futures on the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq were pointing to gains of around 0.3% when the opening bell rings at 09:30 in New York (14:30 London time).
Global equity markets sunk sharply last week as investors dumped so-called 'momentum' stocks which have performed well over recent months. So much so that the S&P 500
carved out what technical analysts call a 'head-and-shoulders' pattern, which seems to be pointing to a possible fall in the S&P 500 to as low as 1,760 points. The approach of the upcoming holiday shortened week may also have contributed to some of the volatility seen last week.
In the US in particular, where the Nasdaq lost 3.1%, concerns about steep valuations going into the new earnings season prompted traders to offload shares, while Wall Street bellwether JPMorgan Chase & Co disappointed with its results.
"With JPMorgan having spooked markets last week, prepare yourself for Citigroup today, and peers Bank of America on Wednesday and Goldman Sachs on Thursday. You know what they say about London buses," said Mike van Dulken, Head of Research at Accendo Markets.
Traders were also awaiting advance retail sales for March which are expected to show a 0.8% increase, up from 0.3% growth in February.
Rising tensions in Ukraine sparked moderate falls on indices in Europe on Monday after President Alexándr Turchínov gave pro-Russian radicals in the east of the country until today to lay down their arms.
Following the wounding of a Ukrainian special forces officer and five other soldiers in a gun battle on Sunday, Ukraine said it would launch a large-scale anti-terrorist campaign against protestors who have barricaded themselves in various government buildings in the eastern region of the country.
were rising strongly ahead of the bell after the company reported 1% growth in adjusted earnings per share to $1.30 for the first quarter, beating the $1.29 expected by analysts. Revenues edged 1% lower to $20.1bn.
"Despite a quarter that was difficult for our company, we delivered strong results. Both our consumer and institutional businesses performed well and we grew both loans and deposits while holding the line on our expenses," said Chief Executive Michael Corbat.
Lexion Pharmaceuticals surged by as much as 25% in pre-market trade after reporting positive results from a type-1 diabetes drug.
West Texas Intermediate futures were down 0.09% at $103.65 a barrel on the NYMEX.
The yield on a benchmark 10-year US Treasury was up one basis point at 2.63%.