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Market Hustle: Futures Rise Ahead of Fed Minutes; Target Slips

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- U.S. stock futures were pointing to a stronger open Wednesday as investors anticipated minutes from the latest Federal Open Market Committee meeting.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were gaining 39 points, or 33.69 points above fair value, to 16,376. S&P 500 futures were adding on 4.25 points, or 2.42 points above fair value, to 1,872.25.

Nasdaq futures were ahead by 8.5 points, or 6.79 points above fair value, to 3,605.

  • Minutes from the FOMC's April 29-30 meeting will be released at 2 p.m. EDT. BNP Paribas economists said they expect the minutes to reveal further insight into how the Federal Reserve could increase interest rates and drain market liquidity when the FOMC ultimately decides to tighten policy. At the FOMC meeting in April there was a coincidental meeting of the Board of Governors the morning of April 30 to discuss medium-term monetary policy issues. The economists take this as a signal that the Fed was reviewing aspects of its exit strategy and expect the April FOMC meeting minutes to feature a preliminary discussion of different options for future monetary policy implementation.

  • Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is scheduled to deliver a commencement speech to NYU at Yankee Stadium at 11:30 a.m.

  • New York Fed Bank President William Dudley, Kansas City Fed President Esther George, and Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota are all expected to give speeches on Wednesday.

  • Netflix (NFLX) was advancing 0.66% in premarket trading as it revealed plans to expand into Germany, France and four other European countries later this year.

  • Target (TGT) was down 0.53% after reporting another deep decline in quarterly earnings and after it cut its full-year guidance. The company continues to struggle with customer traffic and the aftermath of the massive data breach during the last holiday season. Lowe's (LOW) was trading sideways after missing first-quarter earnings per share by 2 cents at 58 cents a share. Revenue arrived above expectations.

  • U.S. markets stumbled on Tuesday after disappointing earnings from Staples (SPLS) and Urban Outfitters (URBN). Small caps relinquished Monday's gains, shedding 1.4% amid a cautious backdrop.

  • The global markets will be keeping an eye on European parliament elections this week. Overnight, the Bank of Japan maintained its current monetary policy stance. The FTSE 100 was down 0.15% and the DAX was up 0.2%. The Hang Seng finished little changed and the Nikkei 225 closed down 0.24%.

-- By Andrea Tse in New York

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