Futures muted as indexes hover near record-highs

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By Manas Mishra

(Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures hovered near record-highs on Tuesday, buoyed by optimism about the global economy in the wake of improving trade relations between Washington and Beijing.

Volumes are expected to decline this week as traders break for the Christmas holidays, with the main U.S. stock exchanges to close at 1 p.m. ET on Tuesday and remain shut on Christmas Day.

All three major stock indexes closed at record-highs on Monday, after President Donald Trump said the United States and China would sign their Phase 1 trade pact “very shortly”.

“This holiday period should be rather calm as trade updates appear very constructive as we near the finalization of the phase-one trade deal next month,” Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA, wrote in a note.

A much-awaited breakthrough in the trade war between the world’s top two economies has sent financial markets across the world into record territory this month. [MKTS/GLOB]

The S&P 500 () is up nearly 29% so far in 2019 and set for its best year since 2013, also powered by three interest rate cuts by the Federal Reserve and easing fears of a recession.

Investors were wary at the beginning of the month about the stock market mirroring a slump from December 2018, when U.S.-China trade tensions escalated sharply, marking the worst December on Wall Street since the Great Depression.

“The reason we won’t see a repeat of last year is because there are no fears of any of the major central banks tightening policy anytime soon,” Moya said.

At 7:15 a.m. ET, were up 22 points, or 0.08%. S&P 500 e-minis were up 2.75 points, or 0.09% and were up 7.25 points, or 0.08%.

Among the few individual movers premarket, Advanced Micro Devices Inc (O:) rose 0.9% after RBC Capital Markets raised it price target on the chipmaker’s shares on improving data center demand.

Boeing Co (N:) was indicated slightly higher, a day after the beleaguered planemaker ousted Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg as it grapples with the crisis around its grounded 737 MAX jets.

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