Stocks - U.S. Futures Rise After Draghi Hints at Rate Cuts

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Stocks - U.S. Futures Rise After Draghi Hints at Rate Cuts
Credit: © Reuters. - U.S. futures were higher on Tuesday, as investors remained upbeat over the prospects of central bank easing to support the economy.

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi hinted that rate cuts or further asset purchases would be warranted unless inflation in the eurozone picks up, something that seems unlikely in the face of a largely synchronous global economic slowdown caused by the U.S.-China trade dispute.

Draghi's comments come as the Federal Reserve kicks off its two-day policy meeting.

While no rate cut is expected from the Fed this week, traders have increased their expectations that it will cut rates this year to support an economy that appears to be slowing down increasingly sharply. The New York Fed's Empire State index of manufacturing activity recorded its steepest monthly drop on record this week, while this month's labor market report also showed a steep decline in hiring.

Tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 futures gained 54 points or 0.7% by 6:40 AM ET (10:40 GMT), while Dow futures rose 87 points or 0.3% and S&P 500 futures was up 11 points or 0.4%.

Moneygram (NASDAQ: MGI ) surged 154% in premarket trade on news that blockchain startup Ripple invested $50 million in the money transfer company in order to boost its token, XRP.

Meanwhile, Facebook (NASDAQ: FB ) gained 2.4% as it announced more details of its own cryptocurrency project, called Libra

Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA ) was up 1.9%, still supported by CEO Elon Musk's decision to delete his Twitter account, and Beyond Meat (NASDAQ: BYND ) jumped 8.9%..

Boeing (NYSE: BA ) rose 0.7%, despite failing to announce any new orders for any of its airplanes in the first day of the Paris Air Show in the wake of two fatal crashes involving its 737 MAX. Rival airplane maker Airbus (PA: AIR ) recorded orders for 123 planes.

Elsewhere, Perrigo (NYSE: PRGO ) was down 0.5%, while Carnival (NYSE: CCL ) lost 0.5% on news that a group of Alaskan fisherman are appealing the cruise ship company’s $20 million settlement with federal prosecutors over pollution violations.

On the data front, housing starts and building permits for May are out at 8:30 AM ET (12:30 GMT).

In commodities, crude oil fell 0.7% to $51.80 a barrel. Gold futures rose 0.5% to $1,349.15 a troy ounce while the U.S. dollar index , which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, inched up 0.1% to 97.190.

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