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Stock Futures Point to More Gains

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NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were signaling Wednesday a continuation of the previous day's sharp gains as global markets joined the U.S. rally ahead of the ADP employment report, factory orders data, and the Federal Reserve's Beige Book release.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at a record high on Tuesday, marking a new peak in a four-year rally that began in March 2009 at the depth of the financial crisis, helped in part by global central bank stimulus and S&P 500 companies largely exceeding earnings and revenue estimates.

"The only place you can find yield right now is the equity markets. So you have a lot of money coming in here chasing this," Keith Bliss, senior vice president of Cuttone, told TheStreet late Tuesday. While Bliss was predicting a further move higher, he also said to bear in mind that "what's interesting about this move is the move Tuesday is being led by traditionally defensive types of stocks. Dividend payers, utilities, stocks you would see when the market is starting to sell off .. so that's the thing that gives a little bit of pause for thought here."

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were rising 42 points, or 38.23 points above fair value, at 14,275. Futures for the S&P 500 were up 4.75 points, or 3.31 points above fair value, at 1541.75. Futures for the Nasdaq were ahead by 5.25 points, or 4.95 points above fair value, at 2803.5.

At 8:15 a.m. EST, the ADP jobs report is expected to show a decline in February to 170,000 in private jobs from 192,000 and provide more color on the labor market ahead of February's nonfarm payrolls report at the end of the week.

"Today's ADP report will provide some important context for market positioning ahead of Friday, and while we expect the report to point to some improvement in labor market fundamentals, it is likely to fall short of providing a signal that the recovery is moving into the clear," said Gennadiy Goldberg, U.S. strategist at TD Securities.

The Census Bureau at 10 a.m. is forecast to say that factory orders fell 2.2% in January after rising 1.8% in December.

Some Federal Reserve officials are scheduled to speak at meetings and conferences Wednesday. Philadelphia Fed President Charles Plosser will speak in Lancaster, Pa. starting at 8:15 a.m.; at 9:30 a.m. Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher is scheduled to speak in front of an audience in Maryland.

The Fed's March Beige Book of anecdotal views on the economy will be released at 2 p.m.

Gold for April delivery was falling 80 cents at $1,574.10, while April crude oil futures were down 16 cents to $90.66 a barrel.

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The benchmark 10-year Treasury was slipping by 5/32, raising the yield to 1.918%. The dollar was up 0.11%, according to the U.S. dollar index.