Dow on track for 200-point jump, putting 26,000 within reach


U.S. stock futures on Tuesday pointed to a jump at the open, with Dow futures rising by more than 200 points and putting the blue-chip gauge on track for a fresh record near the 26,000 level.

Ahead of the opening bell, investors are slated to get earnings from banking heavyweight Citigroup Inc.

C, +1.69%

 and insurer UnitedHealth Group Inc.

UNH, +1.44%

 , as well as a fresh reading for the Empire State index.

What are the main benchmarks doing?

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures

YMH8, +0.87%

climbed by 214 points, or 0.8%, to 26,015, while S&P 500 futures

ESH8, +0.39%

 gained 9.80 points, or 0.4%, to 2,798.50. Nasdaq-100 futures

NQH8, +0.39%

jumped by 22 points, or 0.3%, to 6,797.25.

On Friday ahead of the three-day weekend, the Dow

DJIA, +0.89%

, S&P 500

SPX, +0.67%

 and Nasdaq Composite

COMP, +0.68%

scored yet another round of all-time closing highs, with the blue-chip barometer ending at 25,803.19.

Check out: This epic stock-market rally will get a second wind from stellar earnings

What is driving markets?

The three major equity benchmarks have risen between 22% and 30% over the past 12 months, helped by factors such as an expanding U.S. economy, growth in corporate profits and enthusiasm over the Trump administration’s tax cuts and other business-friendly policies.

A fresh release on the U.S. economy’s manufacturing sector is due at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time, with the January update for the Empire State index.

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Check out: MarketWatch’s Economic Calendar

On the Federal Reserve front, no officials are slated to give speeches on Tuesday.

What are strategists saying?

The S&P 500 “has gained an impressive 4.2% in the new year as its uptrend has steepened,” said Katie Stockton, BTIG’s chief technical strategist, in a note.

“We are looking for a pullback in the 4%-5% range into February. This would be a welcome development, because it would alleviate the market of overly bullish sentiment without likely taking a toll on positive long-term momentum.”

Which stocks are in focus?

Energy giant BP PLC

BP, +1.48%

 said Tuesday it expects it expects to book a $1.7 billion post-tax charge in its fourth-quarter earnings for claims associated with the 2010 Deepwater Horizon blowout..

Citigroup Inc.

C, +1.69%

 and UnitedHealth Group Inc.

UNH, +1.44%

 are expected to report earnings ahead of the bell.

Shares of Ford Motor Co.

F, +0.53%

 could be in focus, after the auto maker teased an all-electric SUV — the “Mach 1” — on Sunday, saying it will spend $11 billion on electric cars through 2022. Ford made the announcement at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

What are other markets doing?

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index

DXY, +0.21%

 , which measures the buck against a basket of six rivals, was up 0.2% to 90.61, recovering somewhat from its recent fall.

The bitcoin spot price

BTCUSD, -13.80%

 was down 13% to $11,865, touching a six-week low, as cryptocurrencies sold off.

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