* Fed, German Court decision, Dutch elections loom
* FedEx, UPS to provide services in some Chinese cities
* Futures up: Dow 45 pts, S&P 5.6 pts, Nasdaq 3.5 pts
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, Sept 11 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures edged
up on Tuesday as investors exercised caution ahead of possible
policy action from the Federal Reserve and a key decision by a
Investors may be reluctant to make bets on risky assets
ahead of a trio of key events later in the week, which could
greatly impact markets. On Monday, investors locked in gains on
a recent rally, with the S&P 500 down 0.6 percent.
Germany's Constitutional Court on Wednesday is expected to
approve the European Stability Mechanism -- the euro zone's new
bailout fund -- but legal experts believe it will impose tough
conditions limiting Berlin's flexibility on future rescues.
Investors also were awaiting a decision by the Federal
Reserve on any additional stimulus measures when the central
bank announces its policy decision after a two-day meeting on
Thursday. Equities have rallied on expectations for fresh
stimulus measures from central banks, with economists
forecasting a 60 percent chance the Fed will announce another
round of quantitative easing.
Another event which could cause turbulence in markets is a
Dutch general election on Wednesday, with voters divided between
bailouts for troubled euro zone economies and austerity measures
"It is one of those 'wait and see days' days where we have a
week full of catalysts that basically start tomorrow so with
that, this market probably sees a day full of sideways action,"
said Art Hogan, managing director of Lazard Capital Markets in
"Sometimes it is what it is and it's the calm before the
S&P 500 futures rose 5.6 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 gained 45
points, and Nasdaq 100 futures added 3.5 points.
Package delivery companies FedEx Corp and United
Parcel Service Inc have received approval to provide
express-package services in some cities of China on their own,
the country's State Postal Bureau (SPB) said on its website last
Sales of the new iPhone could add between a quarter
and a half percentage point to fourth-quarter annualized growth
in the United States, J.P. Morgan's chief economist Michael
Feroli said in a note to clients on Monday.
Zynga Inc's chief marketing officer resigned on
Monday, becoming the latest senior executive to depart the
struggling social games company behind popular Facebook Inc
games such as Farmville.
Economic data on tap includes U.S. international trade
numbers, to be released at 8:30 a.m. (1230 GMT). Economists in
a Reuters poll expect a trade deficit of $44.0 billion in July
versus a deficit of $42.9 billion in June.
The rally in European equities stuttered for a second day in
sight of 13-month highs, with investors concerned about the
strings that Germany may attach to the euro zone bailout fund
and the chance the United States may not deliver widely awaited
Asian shares fell as investors repositioned before the
German Constitutional Court ruling on the euro zone's bailout
funds and a U.S. Federal Reserve meeting that may yield widely
expected monetary easing.