U.S. stock futures ping-ponged between small gains and losses Wednesday, suggesting a muted open for Wall Street as investors keep up their wait for the Federal Reserve's summer summit.
The data calendar is light, but the market will get an update on sales of existing homes last month.
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 7 points at 18,535.00, and S&P 500 futures edged up 1.6 point, or 0.1%, to 2,186.75. Futures on the Nasdaq-100 picked up 3.75 points, or 0.1%, to 4,820.75. Futures had earlier traded slightly in the red.
Stocks ended Tuesday's session a touch higher, bolstered by an upbeat report on new home sales in July. The S&P 500 rose 0.2%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.1%. After touching an intraday record high, the Nasdaq Composite closed up 0.3%.
But trading activity has been lackluster this week, with investors holding off until they have heard from Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen at the central bank's retreat at Jackson Hole, Wyo., on Friday. Yellen's speech there will be closely watched for hints about U.S. monetary policy and what it says about the path of interest rates.
"Uncertainty has enveloped the global markets this week, with investor jitters intensifying as the lack of direction continues to send ominous warnings ahead of Friday's Jackson Hole gathering," said FXTM research analyst Lukman Otunuga in a note.
"Investors should keep diligent this week, as the increasing focus on Yellen's speech may present a threat of creating explosive levels of volatility, if market participants are left empty handed on U.S. rate-hike timings," he added.