May 2, 2018 / 11:42 AM / a year ago

US STOCKS-Apple bumps up futures ahead of Fed decision

* Futures up: Dow 0.15 pct, S&P 0.13 pct, Nasdaq 0.38 pct

By Sruthi Shankar

May 2 (Reuters) - Apple’s forecast-beating results helped U.S. stock futures edge higher on Wednesday, even as investors were wary ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy decision.

Apple’s shares rose 4.1 percent in premarket trading after it posted resilient iPhone sales in the face of waning global demand and promised $100 billion in additional stock buybacks.

At 7:23 a.m. ET, Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 25.25 points, or 0.38 percent.

While the Dow e-minis were up 36 points, or 0.15 percent and S&P 500 e-minis were up 3.5 points, or 0.13 percent.

Atypical for a post Apple-earnings day on Wall Street, investors have a bag full of problems to deal with: from rising inflation and cost pressures, trade concerns and the strengthening dollar.

The Federal Reserve is slated to issue its monetary policy decision at 2:00 p.m. ET. The central bank is expected to hold interest rates steady, but will likely further encourage expectations that it will lift borrowing costs in June on the back of rising inflation and low unemployment.

Traders have priced in a 94.3 percent chance that the Fed will raise rates a quarter percentage point in June, according to the CME Group’s Fedwatch tool.

“Our colleagues expect the Committee to upgrade the inflation language to note that inflation has risen and is near their 2 percent objective,” Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid wrote in a note to clients.

“They could also note that market-based measures of inflation compensation have risen further in recent months.”

The latest data from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) survey on Tuesday showed commodity prices have been rising in the wake of the Trump administration’s tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

Data due at 8:30 a.m. ET on Wednesday includes U.S. private payrolls figures for April. The ADP National Employment Report will probably show an addition of 200,000 jobs in the month, a fall from the 241,000 jobs added in March.

A Trump administration delegation including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is set to visit Beijing on Thursday and Friday for talks with top Chinese officials to settle trade differences.

Among decliners was Snap, whose shares plunged more than 17 percent after the Snapchat owner fell short of Wall Street forecasts for revenue and regular users. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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