US STOCKS-Index futures edge higher, confidence data due

* House prices show signs of stabilization

* Consumer confidence on tap

* Walgreen jumps premarket after earnings

* Futures up: Dow 30 pts, S&P 500 2.4 pts, Nasdaq 9 pts

* For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
(Adds Case-Shiller details)

By Edward Krudy

NEW YORK, Sept 28 (BestGrowthStock) – Wall Street was set to open
higher on Tuesday after signs of stabilization in U.S. home
prices, while investors said forthcoming consumer confidence
data could determine whether a September rally continues.

Signs the economy was on firmer footing have boosted
equities about 9 percent in September. While the Standard &
Poor’s/Case-Shiller home price data did not dispute that view,
investors said consumer confidence data later Tuesday would be
critical for markets.

Peter Kenny, managing director at Knight Equity Markets in
Jersey City, New Jersey, said consumer confidence has been a
reliable indicator of market direction and could determine Wall
Street’s course through the end of the quarter.

“It’s massively important this morning,” he said. “If
consumer confidence does not give the market a reason to trade
higher we will fall off.”

S&P 500 futures (SPc1: ) rose 2.4 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: ) gained 30
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures (NDc1: ) added 9 points.

Walgreen Co (WAG.N: ), the biggest U.S. drug store chain,
reported higher-than-expected quarterly earnings, helped by
strong prescription drug sales, sending its shares up 8.1
percent to $32.80 in premarket trading. For details, see
[ID:nN28124290]

Shares in Pulte Homes Inc (PHM.N: ) rose 1.5 percent to $8.85
after Goldman Sachs removed the stock from its ‘Americas Sell
List’ and upgraded it to “neutral” from “sell.” Analysts
pointed to share and debt purchases, cost cutting and bearish
sentiment toward the stock.

Single-family home prices dipped in July, and are seen
stabilizing near the lows without the homebuyer tax credit that
ended in April, Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller home price
indexes showed on Tuesday. [ID:nNLLSKE6HT]

The Conference Board’s consumer confidence report is due at
10 a.m. EDT (1400 GMT) and is seen falling to 52.5 from 53.5,
according to forecasts in a Reuters poll. [ID:nN27254120]

Continuing the spurt of recent M&A activity, Endo
Pharmaceuticals Holdings Inc (ENDP.O: ) will buy private generics
company Qualitest Pharmaceuticals for about $1.2 billion to
expand its portfolio of pain drugs, marking its second deal in
as many months.

The S&P 500 blew past a strong technical resistance level
at 1,130 last week. Resistance is seen at about 1,173. The
index closed at 1,142.16 on Monday.

(Reporting by Edward Krudy; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

US STOCKS-Index futures edge higher, confidence data due