New York - US stock index futures rose on Wednesday after China's economic growth came in above expectations and Yahoo shares rallied on the strength of revenue growth in Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, in which it has a stake.
- China, the world's second-largest economy, grew at its slowest pace in 18 months at the start of 2014, but the rise was better than expected and showed some improvement in March.
- Revenue growth accelerated in the last quarter of 2013 for Alibaba, a timely lift as it prepares for its highly anticipated US initial public offering. Shares of Yahoo, which holds 24 percent of Alibaba, rallied 8.5 percent in premarket trading despite posting anemic growth.
- S&P 500 e-mini futures rose 9 points and were 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 rose 75 points and Nasdaq 100 futures added 20 points.
- Bank of America posted a first-quarter loss as the No. 2 U.S. bank recorded $6 billion in litigation expenses related to a settlement with the Federal Housing Finance Agency and other mortgage-related matters. The bank's shares fell 0.5 percent in volatile premarket trading.
- Markets continue to keep an eye on east Ukraine, where government forces and separatist pro-Russian militia staged rival shows of force on the eve of talks in Geneva on the former Soviet country's future.