March 27, 2018 / 1:09 PM / 8 months ago

US STOCKS-Wall St set to open higher as trade war tensions ease

* Facebook reverses course, down 1 pct

* Consumer confidence data expected at 10 a.m. ET

* Futures up: Dow 98 pts, S&P 8.5 pts, Nasdaq 41 pts (Adds comment, updates prices)

By Sruthi Shankar and Sweta Singh

March 27 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures rose on Tuesday, adding to Wall Street’s sharp rebound on Monday, as fears of a trade war between the United States and China eased.

All three major U.S. indexes ended up more than 2 percent on Monday following reports that the United States and China were willing to renegotiate tariffs and trade imbalances.

Global markets were rattled last week after President Donald Trump moved to impose tariffs on Chinese imports of up to $60 billion, adding to the import restrictions already placed on solar panels, steel and aluminum.

Top Trump administration officials are now asking China to cut tariffs on imported cars, allow foreign majority ownership of financial services firms and buy more U.S.-made semiconductors to avoid tariffs and a potential trade war.

White House trade adviser Peter Navarro confirmed that Trump has asked Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to try to resolve trade differences with China.

“We expect yesterday’s rally to extend itself as fading fears over a full-blown trade war is begging to restore confidence,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial in New York.

“It’s coming at an opportune time as we approach the end of the quarter window dressing.”

At 9:02 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 98 points, S&P 500 e-minis rose 8.5 points and Nasdaq 100 e-minis gained 41 points.

Among the top 25 most active stocks in premarket trading, eight were in the red, with Facebook reversing course to trade down 1 percent. The stock has been hammered for days following the outcry over the social media company’s handling of users’ data.

The company now faces an investigation by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission on how it allowed data of 50 million users get into the hands of a political consultancy.

Red Hat shares were up 6.2 percent after the software developer reported better-than-expected quarterly results on strong demand for its hybrid cloud products.

Kinder Morgan shares were up 1.2 percent after Citigroup upgraded the stock to “buy”.

Investors are also awaiting consumer confidence data, expected at 10 am ET. The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index is likely to have edged up to 131.0 in March from 130.8 the previous month. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar and Sweta Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)

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