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U.S. Stock Index Futures Gain on Possible Dip-Buying, New Drugs

(Bloomberg) — U.S. stock-index futures rose on Tuesday in Asia as some investors deemed that Monday’s equity rout brought prices to attractive levels.

S&P 500 Index futures contracts expiring in March rose 1% as of 10:22 a.m. in Tokyo, while contracts climbed 0.8% for the Dow Jones Industrial Average and advanced 1.2% for the Nasdaq 100.

Overnight, U.S. equities slumped amid growing concerns that the novel coronavirus is spreading more widely outside China. All three main U.S. stock benchmarks fell more than 3%, with the S&P 500 dropping the most since February 2018. Japan’s stock market also slid Tuesday morning.

“U.S. futures are going up a little on expectations dip buyers might emerge,” said Nader Naeimi, the head of dynamic markets at AMP Capital Investors Ltd. in Sydney. “There is also news out of Japan about possible treatment of coronavirus.”

Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun reported over the weekend that the government plans to recommend FujiFilm Holdings Corp.’s Avigan tablets for treating the coronavirus. Separately, U.S.-based Moderna Inc. said it sent the first batch of its vaccine to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to be used in the planned Phase 1 study in the U.S.

The Moderna report could have helped the rally in futures, according to Nick Twidale, general manager of IC Markets in Sydney. “It looks like a tentative first step in the right direction, but this will help markets,” he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Shoko Oda in Tokyo at soda13@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Lianting Tu at ltu4@bloomberg.net, Naoto Hosoda, Margo Towie

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