NEW YORK -
Stock index futures rose on Wednesday as the focus shifted from concerns about Cyprus's financial health to the statement from the Federal Reserve's policy committee and news conference by Chairman Ben Bernanke later in the day.
The Federal Reserve looks set to sustain its $85 billion monthly bond-buying stimulus despite improving U.S. economic data as a new flare-up in the euro zone crisis from Cyprus's troubles reminds officials of a risky global environment.
The Fed will release the FOMC statement and the Summary of Economic Projections at 2:00 p.m. ET (2.00 p.m. ET). Bernanke's news conference is due around 2:30 p.m.
"The market will try really hard to read between the lines, especially after the last one, to see if there are any changes in the Fed's stance," said Adam Sarhan, chief executive of Sarhan Capital in New York.
"Fundamentals are improving but we are still not at the critical level where the economy and the stock market can grow organically. So the market reaction, if there are any changes, could be big."
Cypriot leaders held crisis talks on Wednesday to avert financial meltdown after the Cypriot parliament rejected the terms of a European Union bailout, throwing efforts to rescue the latest casualty of the euro zone debt crisis into disarray.
JPMorgan Chase & Co
A key U.S. bank regulator has called for improvement in the management of JPMorgan Chase on concerns linked to the multi-billion dollar "London Whale" trading loss last year, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing knowledgeable sources.
European Union lawmakers are expected to agree on Wednesday to bar bankers in Europe from getting bonuses bigger than their salary, introducing the first cap of its kind globally.
S&P 500 futures added 8 points and were above fair value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures added 54 points and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 76 points.
(Reporting By Angela Moon; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Nick Zieminski)