The U.S. stock market was poised for a higher open Thursday after encouraging news on U.S. retail sales.
KEEPING SCORE: Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 37 points, or 0.2 percent, to 16,376 as of 9:18 a.m. (1318 GMT). Standard & Poor's 500 index futures edged up five points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,872. Nasdaq futures gained 12 points, or 0.3 percent, to 3,719.
RETAIL REBOUND: The Commerce Department said Thursday that seasonally-adjusted retail sales rose 0.3 percent in February as Americans spent more on auto, clothing and furniture. Spending had fallen 0.6 percent in January. The February increase suggests that spending has started to recover after being tempered by snowstorms and freezing temperatures that blanketed much of the country.
ASIA: Earlier, Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.1 percent while Hong Kong's Hang Seng sank 0.7 percent. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite rose 1.1 percent.