NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were rising Monday ahead of the final day for legislators in Washington to avoid tax hikes and deep across-the-board spending cuts that would go into effect at midnight if Congress can't reach a temporary deal.
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 0.52%, or 67 points, at 12,844. Futures for the S&P 500 were adding 0.81%, or 11.25 points, to 1395. Nasdaq futures were gaining 0.52%, or 13.5 points, with a fair value of 2600.
Reports surfaced early Monday that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Vice President Joe Biden had made "major progress" toward a budget deal.
Congress failed to reach an agreement over the weekend as Democrats and Republicans went back and forth on where they should set a threshold of income for individuals and families.Democrats had hoped to increase taxes on those individuals who had earned more than $360,000 each year and families with incomes of $450,000, but Senate Republicans suggested the individual tax hikes go to those earning $450,000 or more and on couples making a yearly amount of $550,000. "There's still significant distance between the two sides, but negotiations continue," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Sunday night. Stocks fell on Friday as investors feared legislators would fail to reach any sort of deal by the Jan. 1 deadline. President Barack Obama emerged after the closing bell on Friday to say that he had engaged in a "constructive discussion" with House and Senate leadership about preventing tax hikes on the middle class. "But if an agreement isn't reached in time between Sen. Reid and Sen.