US pre-open: Stocks set for slight gains, Nvidia jumps ahead of the bell
Stocks on Wall Street were being called to start higher heading into the long weekend, helped by what analysts said was a relatively positive update from the World Health Organisation overnight on the Wuhan coronavirus.
Investors were also looking ahead to the release of a raft of key economic data later on Friday.
As of 1241 GMT, futures tracking the Dow Jones Industrials were tacking on 35.0 points to 29,467.0, while those for the Nasdaq-100 were rising by 31.75 points to 9,644.75.
"Fridays in 2020 have not been the best for stocks and we could see investors fall out of love of their bullish bets as everyone waits to have a clearer picture with the spreading of the coronavirus," said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda.
On a more positive note, Drs Adam Barker and Tara Raveendran at ShoreCap said the WHO's update showed that the "underlying dynamics" of the contagion, which was slowing down, had not changed despite the new methodology being used by Chinese officials that saw the reports number of cases spike on Thursday.
Nvidia was a top gainer before the opening bell after the maker of graphics cards posted record sales of $968m for its latest quarter.
Shares of Roku were also higher on the back of the videostreaming outfit's stronger-than-expected quarterly report card and confident steer from management for the year ahead.
Kraft Heinz could come under selling pressure after analysts at JP Morgan cut their target price for the stock from $34 to $29.
Still due out were results from Beyond Meat and Deere&Co..
On the economic calendar for Friday, at 1330 GMT the Department of Commerce was set to publish readings for retail sales and industrial production in January, followed a preliminary print on consumer confidence in February, from the University of Michigan, at 1500 GMT.