Quarterly results and volatility in emerging markets could set the tone for trading in U.S. markets Tuesday.
But the Dow was pointing to a positive start, helped by solid earnings from Pfizer (, which reported better-than-expected earnings, though sales fell short of estimates. )
Earnings season is in full swing: Ford ( shares rose after the automaker reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings that matched last year's results. )
Comcast ( reported a jump in quarterly sales and earnings. )
DuPont ( reported a jump in quarterly sales and operating earnings, propelled by insecticide sales in Latin America as well as earlier seed shipments. The company also announced a $5 billion share buyback. )
After the close, results are due from Yahoo (, )AT&T ( and )Electronic Arts (. )
The turmoil has been sparked, in part, by the U.S. Federal Reserve's plans to reign in the flow of cheap money. The markets expect the Fed to announce a further cut to its bond-buying program Wednesday, which could prompt a withdrawal of cash from vulnerable emerging markets.
"With all this [turmoil] in the background and ahead of tomorrow's Fed policy meeting in which most in the market now expect a further reduction of the bond-buying program by $10 billion, it's a no-brainer that asset allocators around the world are shedding their emerging market holdings," said Ishaq Siddiqi, a market strategist at ETX Capital in London.
In economic news, the U.S. Census Bureau is set to release its monthly report on durable goods orders at 8:30 a.m. ET. The Case-Shiller 20-city home price index is due at 9 a.m. ET, while the Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index comes out at 10 a.m. ET.
President Obama will give his annual State of the Union message at 9 p.m. ET.