* ADP employment, factory orders data on tap
* MannKind shares soar as diabetes drug gets FDA backing
* Futures up: Dow 24 pts, S&P 2.5 pts, Nasdaq 8.25 pts
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, April 2 U.S. stock index futures
inched higher on Wednesday ahead of data on the labor market
after the S&P 500 set its latest record high in the prior
* Investors await the release of the ADP National Employment
report for March at 8:15 a.m. EDT (1215 GMT) for clues on the
health of the labor market ahead of Friday's key payrolls
report. Expectations are for private employers to have added
195,000 jobs, against 139,000 in the previous month.
* Later in the session at 10:00 a.m. (1400 GMT), factory
orders data for February is due. Investors will be looking for
signs of growth after the previous month's decline of 0.7
percent was attributed to a harsh winter. Analysts polled expect
an increase of 1.2 percent.
* Shares of MannKind Corp nearly doubled in price,
soaring 97.5 percent to $7.94 in premarket trading Wednesday
after U.S. health advisers Tuesday recommended approval of the
company's inhaled diabetes drug.
* S&P 500 e-mini 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 24 points and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 8.25
* The S&P 500 closed at a record high Tuesday after data on
factory activity indicated economic growth was gaining traction.
* Agrium Inc said the late spring season is
expected to result in first-quarter earnings per share at just
* European shares looked set to stretch their winning streak
into a seventh day as positive U.S. car sales data boosted auto
makers and underpinned an improving macroeconomic picture from
the United States.
* Asian share markets added to their recent rally on
Wednesday as investors focused on the positive in a mixed bag of
global economic data.
(Editing by Bernadette Baum)