Futures climb on IBM earnings report, stimulus hopes

(Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures rose on Tuesday after a better-than-expected quarterly profit from IBM and on hopes for more domestic stimulus to prop up an economy reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic.

International Business Machines Corp (IBM.N) jumped 5.3% premarket after it signaled higher demand in its cloud computing business, as large corporations accelerate their digital shift.

Advisers to President Donald Trump and congressional Democrats were set to discuss the next steps in responding to the coronavirus crisis on Tuesday, with congressional Republicans saying they were working on a $1 trillion relief bill.

Also lifting the mood, European Union leaders agreed on a massive coronavirus relief program overnight.

The S&P 500 closed higher for the year and the Nasdaq notched a record closing high on Monday after promising early data from trials of three potential vaccines and a boost from high-flying companies including Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O) and Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O).

Meanwhile, new infections raged in Florida on Monday, while California saw improvement, with cases and hospitalizations beginning to stabilize after a surge. Trump also said he would resume holding regular COVID-19 news briefings on Tuesday.

At 6:12 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis 1YMcv1 were up 160 points, or 0.6%. S&P 500 e-minis EScv1 were up 22.25 points, or 0.69% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis NQcv1 were up 91.25 points, or 0.83%.

Among other stocks, oil majors Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N) and Chevron Corp (CVX.N) rose 2.2% and 1.4%, respectively, on prospects of higher fuel demand.

Later in the day, investors will look to quarterly reports from Coca-Cola Co (KO.N), weapons supplier Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) and Marlboro maker Philip Morris International Inc (PM.N).

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