Stock-index futures point to more gains on hopes spread of coronavirus is slowing

Stock-index futures edged higher Tuesday, with analysts attributing strength in part to signs the spread of the coronavirus in China may be slowing.

Investors were also awaiting the first of two days of congressional testimony by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, who is expected to reiterate that the central bank will be monitoring the impact of the coronavirus while sticking to a wait-and-see stance on monetary policy.

What are major indexes doing?

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average YMH20, +0.34%  rose 90 points, or 0.3%, to 29,335, while S&P 500 futures ESH20, +0.31%  were up 10 points, or 0.3%, at 3,363. Nasdaq-100 NQH20, +0.47%  futures rose 44 points, or 0.5%, to 9,571.50.

The Dow DJIA, +0.60%  on Monday rose 174.31 points, or 0.6%, to end at 29,276.82, while the S&P 500 SPX, +0.73%  gained 24.38 points or 0.7%, to finish at 3,352.09. The Nasdaq COMP, +1.13%  rose 107.88 points to 9,628.39, a gain of 1.1%. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite closed at records.

What’s driving the market?

China’s National Health Commission on Tuesday said in its daily update that 108 deaths were reported in the previous 24 hours, bringing the total to 1,016 deaths in mainland China since the disease emerged in December. The number of new, confirmed cases fell to 2,478 from 3,062 a day earlier, bringing the total to 42,638 on the mainland, including some of whom have since recovered and been released from treatment.

“Sadly the coronavirus crisis continues to rumble on, but it seems the rate of infections is slowing, so traders have taken that as a positive sign,” said David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets U.K., in a note.

With some businesses in China are going back to work after an extended Lunar New Year holiday aimed at containing the virus,

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