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U.S. Stocks Likely To Resume Recent Upward Trend

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Following the lackluster performance seen in the previous session, stocks appear poised to extend their recent upward trend in early trading on Wednesday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 149 points.

Early buying interest may be generated in reaction to another batch of upbeat earnings news from a number of big-name companies.

Social media giant Twitter (TWTR) is seeing significant pre-market strength after reporting fourth quarter results that exceeded analyst estimates on both the top and bottom lines.

Shares of Coca-Cola (KO) may also move to the upside after the beverage giant reported better than expected fourth quarter earnings and forecast a return to sales growth in 2021.

Auto giant General Motors (GM) also reported fourth quarter earnings that beat expectations but warned a global semiconductor shortage could reduce its earnings this year.

Mattel (MAT), Yelp (YELP) and Bunge (BG) are among the other companies that reported better than expected quarterly results.

Traders also continue to express optimism about more fiscal stimulus, which has helped to propel stocks to new record highs in recent sessions.

In economic news, the Labor Department released a report showing consumer prices in the U.S. increased in line with economist estimates in the month of January.

The Labor Department said its consumer price index rose by 0.3 percent in January after edging up by a revised 0.2 percent in December.

Economists had expected consumer prices to climb by 0.3 percent compared to the 0.4 percent increase originally reported for the previous month.

Excluding food and energy prices, core consumer prices came in unchanged for the second consecutive month. Core prices were expected to rise by 0.2 percent.

Shortly after the start of trading, the Commerce Department is due to release its report on wholesale inventories in the month of December. Wholesale inventories are expected to inch up by 0.1 percent.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak before a virtual Economic Club of New York event at 2 pm ET.

After moving sharply higher over the past several sessions, stocks turned in a lackluster performance during trading on Tuesday. Despite the choppy trading, the tech-heavy Nasdaq inched up to a new record closing high.

The major averages ended the day on opposite sides of the unchanged line. While the Nasdaq crept up 20.06 points or 0.1 percent to 14,007.70, the Dow edged down 9.93 points or less than a tenth of a percent to 31,375.83 and the S&P 500 slipped 4.36 points or 0.1 percent to 3,911.23.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher during trading on Wednesday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index inched up by 0.2 percent, while China's Shanghai Composite Index jumped by 1.4 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets have shown a lack of direction on the day. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index is up by 0.1 percent, the German DAX Index and the French CAC 40 Index are nearly unchanged.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are rising $0.29 to $58.65 a barrel after climbing $0.39 to $58.36 a barrel on Tuesday. Meanwhile, an ounce of gold is trading at $1,855.10, up $17.60 compared to the previous session's close of $1,837.50. On Tuesday, gold rose $3.30.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 104.57 yen compared to the 104.59 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Tuesday. Against the euro, the dollar is trading at $1.2134 compared to yesterday's $1.2119.

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