* July ADP numbers smallest increase since April
* Nothing decided on timing of rate hike: Fed’s Powell tells CNBC
* Walt Disney falls after cutting cable unit profit forecast
* Futures up: Dow 111 pts, S&P 18 pts, Nasdaq 44 pts (Adds details, comment, updates prices)
By Tanya Agrawal
Aug 5 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set to open higher on Wednesday after data showed private sector hiring in July rose the least since April, reducing expectations of a strong reading in the government’s payrolls report due Friday.
The ADP National Employment Report showed private employers added 185,000 workers in July, below the 215,000 increase forecast by economists surveyed by Reuters.
Some economists have said a softer labor market could prompt the U.S. Federal Reserve to wait until December to increase interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade.
Higher rates increase cost of borrowing for companies, leading to lower profits.
The Fed has said it needs to see a sustained economic recovery before it raises interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade.
U.S. stocks finished lower on Tuesday for a third straight session as investors worried about a rise in interest rates and Apple’s shares hit their lowest in over six months.
Atlanta Federal Reserve President Dennis Lockhart told the Wall Street Journal that September may be the right time for the U.S. Federal Reserve to lift interest rates.
However, Fed Governor Jerome Powell told CNBC on Wednesday that the central bank’s policymakers had not yet decided whether to raise rates in September, adding that data on the labor market would be key to that decision.
“It suggests that September is not yet a done deal as some Fed centrists are still unimpressed by the data,” Standard Chartered economist Thomas Costerg said. “It seems the Fed remains entrenched in its wait-and-see mode.”
S&P 500 e-minis were up 17.75 points, or 0.85 percent, with 163,845 contracts traded at 8:31 a.m. ET. Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 44.25 points, or 0.97 percent, on volume of 29,417 contracts while Dow e-minis were up 111 points, or 0.64 percent, with 22,748 contracts changing hands.
Investors will also assess earnings reports from a number of companies on Wednesday including Tesla Motors, GoDaddy , Fitbit and CBS.
Dow component Walt Disney’s shares fell 6.5 percent to $113.80 in premarket trading after the media company lowered profit guidance for its cable networks unit and reported quarterly revenue slightly below expectations.
Etsy slumped 21 percent to $15.24 a day after the crafts shopping website operator’s quarterly loss doubled due to higher marketing expenses.
Handbag maker Kate Spade rose 6.5 percent to $422.06 after same-store sales beat estimates. Ralph Lauren rose 4.6 percent to $129 after the company’s profit beat expectations. (Reporting by Tanya Agrawal; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)