* Futures up: Dow 130 pts, S&P 19.5 pts, Nasdaq 55.75 pts
By Aastha Agnihotri
Feb 10 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were higher on Wednesday, with oil prices staging a modest recovery, ahead of U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s appearance before Congress.
* Yellen, whose testimony on monetary policy starts at 10:00 a.m. ET (1500 GMT), is expected to defend the central bank’s rate hike in December and likely insist further hikes this year remain on track, albeit at a slower pace.
* Fears of a global and U.S. economic slowdown, along with oil’s precipitous slide, have already dampened the market’s expectations for a hike in coming months.
* Investors will tune into Yellen’s remarks for clues on the Fed’s outlook on the economy as interest rates turn negative around the world amid the turmoil in markets.
* Diverging central bank policies have played havoc with financial stocks, especially in the past few days. A rebound in European banks on Wednesday, helped prop up global stocks.
* Oil prices, which have often dictated the market’s moves this year, were up about 2 percent on rekindled hopes a production cut by major producers.
* Wall Street closed lower for the third session in a row on Tuesday, after a sharp fall in crude battered the energy sector.
* U.S. corporate reports are not offering much relief, with a few marquee names giving grim forecasts. Investors have been quick to punish the stocks of any company giving negative news.
* Shares of Walt Disney were down 2.8 percent at $89.70 premarket after a fall in profit at its ESPN sports network overshadowed the success of “Star Wars”.
* Fitbit was up 5.9 percent at $15.15 after Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff reported a stake in the maker of wearable fitness devices. The company’s share lockup period expires Wednesday.
* Tesla, Cisco and Twitter are scheduled to report after the close.
Futures snapshot at 7:06 a.m. ET:
* Dow e-minis were up 130 points, or 0.81 percent, with 48,580 contracts changing hands.
* S&P 500 e-minis were up 19.5 points, or 1.06 percent, with 289,033 contracts traded.
* Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 55.75 points, or 1.41 percent, on volume of 46,375 contracts. (Reporting by Abhiram Nandakumar and Aastha Agnihotri in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D‘Souza)