NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were higher Wednesday as trade data and gains in offshore markets bolstered sentiment.
Eurozone inflation and German unemployment fell unexpectedly in December. The former fell to 0.8% year on year while German unemployment fell by 15,000 to 2.965 million against expectations for no change. Low inflation is seen to put pressure on the ECB to respond with stimulus. The region's central bank meets Thursday
Several Fed speeches are due Tuesday: Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren will speak on the economic outlook in Connecticut at 8:30 a.m., while San Francisco Fed President John Williams speak on the economy and monetary policy in Arizona at 2:10 p.m.
Major U.S. markets closed lower Monday after data showed that service industries had expanded by less than expected.
Lockhead Martin (LMT), Bank of America (BAC)and Alcoa (AA) were all premarket movers, up between 1.1% to 0.76%. Convergys (CVG) shares rose 20% in after-hours trading Monday after company management said it would buy Stream Global Services for $820 million in cash.
Major world markets were mostly higher. The Hang Seng finished up 0.13% while Japan's Nikkei was off 0.59% due to ongoing yen strength. Germany's DAX was rising 0.56% while the FTSE was 0.38% higher.
Janet Yellen was approved by the Senate on Monday as the first chairwoman of the Federal Reserve in a 56-26 vote.