US STOCKS-Futures point to higher open after Tues sell-off

* Investors await Fed statement on rates

* WellPoint, Dow Chemical, Corning rise after results

* Sprint shares fall after wider loss

* Futures up: Dow 45 pts, S&P 6 pts, Nasdaq 11.25 pts

* For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
(Updates prices)

By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK, April 28 (BestGrowthStock) – U.S. stock index futures
pointed to a higher open on Wednesday, following a steep
sell-off in the previous session, as investors awaited the
Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision and a statement on the
economy.

The Fed is expected to hold interest rates near zero and
repeat its vow of very low rates for an extended period as the
Federal Reserve Open Market Committee concludes a two-day
policy meeting. The statement is expected at around 2:15 p.m.
EDT (1815 GMT). For details, see [ID:nN2298630]

Tuesday’s sharp drop, including a 2 percent fall in the S&P
500, was triggered by downgrades in Greece and Portugal credit
ratings and after a U.S. Senate subcommittee grilled Goldman
Sachs (GS.N: ) executives on the bank’s role in the financial
meltdown, heightening the possibility of financial reform.

Earnings season stayed in high gear, with Dow Chemical Co
(DOW.N: ) up 2.7 percent to $30.89 in early trading after
reporting a profit that beat expectations. [ID:nN28164681]

WellPoint Inc (WLP.N: ) and Corning Inc (GLW.N: ) both posted
better-than-expected results. Corning rose 2.4 percent to
$20.60. [ID:nN28204612] and [ID:nN28169087]

On the downside, Sprint Nextel Corp (S.N: ) sank 4 percent to
$3.93 after it recorded a wider loss, but met expectations,
excluding charges. [ID:nN28116116]

“We continue to get positive earnings surprises and good
guidance, especially in the industrial sector, but the issues
in Europe could overshadow that,” said Craig Peckham, trading
strategist at Jefferies & Co in New York.

S&P 500 futures (SPc1: ) were up 6 points and were above fair
value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account
interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the
contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures (DJc1: ) rose 45
points, while Nasdaq 100 futures (NDc1: ) gained 11.25 points.

Nasdaq futures were helped by Broadcom Corp (BRCM.O: ), which
rose 2.5 percent to $35.70 a day after the company swung to a
first-quarter profit (Read more your timing to make a profit.), beating expectations, and gave an outlook
above the consensus estimate. [ID:nN27114858]

U.S. Senate Republicans offered counterproposals on
financial regulation reform in a bid to water down portions of
a massive Democratic bill. [nN27117703]

In Europe, investors continued to reel from the Greece and
Portugal downgrades, with European stocks falling 0.3 percent
Wednesday morning after a 3.1 percent sell-off the day before.
[.EU]

In Tokyo, Japan’s Nikkei average slid 2.6 percent, dragged
down by exporters such as Kyocera (6971.T: ) that were hurt by
fears that euro zone debt problems could spread. [.T]

Investors also digested Chinese state media reports that
the country would place a moratorium on capital raising by real
estate firms as part of a broader campaign to rein in property
price rises. [ID:nLDE63R03C]

Stock Market Research

(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

US STOCKS-Futures point to higher open after Tues sell-off