Alice N. Sanders
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Alice N. Sanders in US Markets,

Investors Await Housing Data

U.S. stock-index futures advanced, after the Nasdaq Composite Index climbed to a 14-year high, as investors awaited a report on housing starts to gauge the strength of the world’s biggest economy.

Home Depot Inc. gained 3.5 percent in early New York trading after second-quarter profit beat analysts’ estimates. Aeropostale Inc. advanced 4.9 percent late yesterday after the teen clothing company said Julian Geiger has returned as chief executive officer.

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPX) expiring in September gained 0.2 percent to 1,970.6 at 11:11 a.m. in London, while Nasdaq 100 Index contracts gained 0.2 percent to 4,021.5. The Nasdaq Composite jumped 1 percent to the highest level since March 2000 yesterday. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures climbed 40 points, or 0.2 percent, to 16,833 today.

A report at 8:30 a.m. in Washington may show that U.S. housing starts increased at a 965,000 annual pace in July, according to the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. That would be faster than the 893,000 rate in June. Separate data may show the consumer price index advanced 0.1 percent last month from 0.3 percent in June.

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