October 14, 2016 / 1:05 PM / 2 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St set to open higher as bank stocks rise

* JPMorgan, Citi, Wells Fargo beat revenue estimates

* U.S. retail sales up 0.6 pct, in line with estimates

* Dollar index rises 0.39 pct, gold falls

* Futures up: Dow 71 pts, S&P 7.5 pts, Nasdaq 15.5 pts (Adds details, comments, updates prices)

By Yashaswini Swamynathan

Oct 14 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures pointed to a higher open on Friday as a set of upbeat results from big U.S. banks and robust economic data boosted investor sentiment.

Shares of JPMorgan, Citigroup and other big U.S. banks rose more than 1 percent in premarket trading after better-than-expected quarterly revenue reports.

Investors are awaiting Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s speech at noon in Boston, where she is likely to offer more insight into the growing sentiment among policymakers to raise interest rates relatively soon.

Sustained growth in the labor market and improving inflation have encouraged Fed officials such as Boston Fed president Eric Rosengren, who told CNBC on Friday that the “very high” odds for a rate increase in December was appropriate.

A report from the U.S. Commerce Department showed retail sales rebounded in September, helped by a surge in motor vehicle purchases. The measure rose 0.6 percent, compared to a fall of 0.2 percent in August.

Major U.S. stock indexes have been swinging between losses and gains since Monday as uncertainty regarding the quarterly earnings season and the outcome of a tightly run U.S. presidential race threaten market valuations.

Dow e-minis were up 71 points, or 0.39 percent at 8:31 a.m. ET, with 31,679 contracts changing hands.

S&P 500 e-minis were up 7.5 points, or 0.35 percent, with 189,051 contracts traded.

Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 15.5 points, or 0.32 percent, on volume of 25,733 contracts.

“From a fundamental standpoint, investors are really hungry for clarity and a bullish catalyst,” said Adam Sarhan, CEO of Sarhan Capital. “That will come from the Fed and from earnings today.”

Earnings of S&P 500 companies are expected to have fallen about 0.7 percent in the third quarter but some investors hope that enough companies will beat analysts’ expectations for the index to end the season with a slight gain.

Wall Street slipped on Thursday as financial stocks fell and a 10 percent fall in Chinese monthly exports spooked global markets.

However, an unexpected rise in inflation in China helped ease some concerns about the health of the world’s second-biggest economy.

The dollar rose 0.39 percent, while prices of gold , a safe haven, dropped 0.6 percent.

Deutsche Bank’s Frankfurt-listed stock was up 3.4 percent after senior executives told Reuters that the outflows the German lender had seen in its wealth management business were not significant. Deutsche Bank’s U.S. shares rose 2.3 percent in premarket trading.

Aerohive Networks fell 22.73 percent to $4.35 after the company estimated a bigger loss in the third quarter than what analysts’ had expected. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Don Sebastian)

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