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U.S. stock index futures pointed to positive start to the trading day on Thursday as investors weigh strong earnings against lingering trade-war fears.
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 68 points, or 0.3%, to 25,742
Futures for the S&P 500 picked up 6.5 points, or 0.2%, at 2,861.50
NASDAQ futures advanced 7.25 points, or 0.1%, to 7,536.50
Shares of Cisco Systems climbed 3.5% in the pre-market on the back of quarterly numbers that topped analyst expectations. The company also issued on Wednesday better-than-expected revenue guidance for the current quarter.
Walmart also reported quarterly earnings that topped expectations, sending its stock up 1.4% before the bell.
On the data front, investors will be watching housing starts, weekly jobless figures, and a Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook.
Gains, however, were capped as Wall Street continued to fret over the ongoing trade spat between China and the U.S. Investors had largely priced in the two countries striking a deal this month. Instead, the U.S. hiked tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports. China retaliated with higher tariffs on $60 billion worth of goods.
On top of that, President Donald Trump declared on Wednesday a national emergency over threats against American technology. This move is expected to be followed by a ban on U.S. firms doing business with Huawei, a Chinese telecommunications company.
Overseas, the Nikkei 225 doffed 0.6% Thursday, while in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index gained just more than six points.
Oil prices moved up 83 cents to $62.85 U.S. a barrel.
Gold prices faded $2.90 to $1,294.90 U.S. an ounce.