* China signals support for growth, boosts global shares
* Dow components Travelers, DuPont shares up following
* Apple due to report after the bell
* UPS profit falls as global customers use cheaper shipping
* Futures up: Dow 38 pts, S&P 2.5 pts, Nasdaq 7 pts
By Angela Moon
NEW YORK, July 23 Wall Street was set for a
slightly higher open on Tuesday, helped by solid earnings from
blue-chips DuPont and Travelers and by China's efforts to avoid
a hard landing for its slowing economy.
With earnings season in full swing, Apple Inc is
due to report after the closing bell. Apple shares were up 0.3
percent at $427.59 in premarket trade.
U.S. insurer Travelers Cos Inc posted an 85 percent
rise in quarterly profit, helped by lower disaster losses. The
stock jumped 1.4 percent to $86.60 in premarket trade.
Chemical maker DuPont Co, also a Dow component, said
it was looking to sell or spin off its performance chemicals
unit to insulate itself from flagging sales of paint pigments
that have weighed on profits. The stock was up
4.2 percent at $59.55 in premarket trade.
"We are seeing a couple of dynamics taking place right now,
pushing the market to all-time highs. We have a strong start to
the earnings season, the market likes round numbers and we
happen to be just a short breath away from 1,700 (on the S&P
500)," said Andre Bakhos, director of market analytics at Lek
Securities in New York.
"The stock market is seen as the only real game in town
where you can catch returns."
S&P 500 futures rose 2.5 points and were slightly
above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking
into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on
the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures added
38 points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 7 points.
Among decliners, Netflix Inc shares fell 4 percent
to $251.25 in premarket trade, a day after the
online-entertainment firm reported that its show "Arrested
Development" lured new subscribers in the second quarter but not
enough to impress investors.
United Parcel Service Inc posted a smaller quarterly
profit as customers chose slower, cheaper shipping services,
especially on international routes.
The S&P 500 closed at a third straight all-time high on
Monday, with other major indexes also gaining, despite
disappointing results from McDonald's. The S&P 500 is up
19 percent so far this year.
China must deepen reforms to address a slew of challenges
confronting it, President Xi Jinping said in comments published
on Tuesday that emphasize the government's determination to
restructure the slowing economy. China shares
listed in Hong Kong posted their biggest rise in nearly seven
months on Tuesday.