The US bourse is set to open higher as European leaders get ready to meet.

New York - US stock index futures rose on Tuesday on hopes for an easing of tensions in Ukraine and as a cascade of earnings landed.

* Pro-Russian rebels agreed to hand over the black boxes from the Malaysian plane shot down near the Ukraine-Russia border last week and the Malaysian government announced it also negotiated the release of the remains of nearly 300 victims.

The European Union threatened Russia with harsher sanctions over Ukraine, but France's president signaled the disputed delivery of a warship to Moscow would go ahead.

* Traders will also keep an eye on the Middle East as Israel pounded targets across the Gaza Strip and said no ceasefire was near. Top US and UN diplomats pursued talks to stop fighting that has claimed nearly 600 lives, an overwhelming majority from inside Gaza.

* A glut of earnings is on the books, with McDonald's, Coca-Cola, and Travelers leading a pack of nearly 40 S&P 500 components scheduled to post quarterly numbers Tuesday.

Apple will report after the closing bell.

* The economic calendar includes the Consumer Price Index for June set for release at 8:30 a.m. EDT (14:30 SA time) followed half an hour later by home prices for May.

At 10 a.m. (16:00 SA time), home resales for June and the Richmond Fed index for July are due.

* S&P 500 e-mini futures were up 7 points and fair value - a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract - indicated a higher open.

Dow Jones industrial average e-mini futures rose 42 points and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures added 17 points.

* Chipotle Mexican Grill rose 10.5 percent premarket a day after it reported a nearly 26 percent jump in quarterly profit after traffic surged despite higher prices. - Reuters