US stock futures inch higher as rate-driven rout eases – — U.S. stock index futures rose slightly in Tuesday night trading as Wall Street appeared to be stabilizing after concerns about longer-term interest rates caused a series of steep losses.

However, risk appetite remains fragile, especially given continued geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, and Fed officials reiterated the central bank’s outlook for interest rate stability.

By 19:37 ET (23:37 GMT), it rose 0.2% to 5,103.0 points and rose 0.2% to 17,924.50 points. It rose by 0.2% to 38,125.0 points.

Powell signals less confidence in cuts; Wall Street clocks are mixed on close race

Wall Street indexes closed mixed on Tuesday, with some positive results suggesting that Fed Chairman Jerome Powell has less confidence in the central bank’s early interest rate cuts due to recent signs of stickiness in inflation. This was largely offset by this.

Powell’s comments came after stronger-than-expected inflation and retail sales in March, suggesting that inflation is likely to remain well above levels that the Fed is comfortable with. Ta. As a result, traders are largely pricing in expectations for a June rate cut.

fell 0.2% to 5,051.41 points and fell 0.1% to 15,865.25 points. It was the only insurance company to rise, rising 0.2% to 37,798.97 points after UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE:) reported strong first-quarter profits.

Wall Street also appeared to be stabilizing after falling between 1.5% and 2.3% over the past five sessions as investors locked in recent gains due to worsening risk appetite.

The worsening Middle East crisis has spooked markets after Iran launched drone and missile attacks against Israel, but Israel is now seen as preparing a response.

Advances in technology provide some support

Gains in major technology stocks provided some support for Wall Street on Tuesday. Wall Street giant Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:) rose 0.2% after announcing it would invest $1.5 billion in Abu Dhabi-based AI company G42. Microsoft also rose 0.4% in after-hours trading.

The news triggered a rally in other AI stocks, with market favorite NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:) rising 0.6% in aftermarket trading, following a 1.6% gain during trading.

Earnings season continues

The positive performance of some first quarter results also supported sentiment. morgan stanley (NYSE:) rose 0.2% in aftermarket trading after the company reported better-than-expected quarterly profits.

UnitedHealth rose 0.2% after jumping 5.3% on strong results.

Earnings season for Dutch semiconductor giant ASML Holding (AS:) NV (NASDAQ:) and healthcare giant is expected to continue on Wednesday. Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:) on tap.