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Stock Futures Rise as Obama Taps Yellen as Fed Chief

Tickers in this article: JCP SBUX SKS VVUS ^DJI ^GSPC ^IXIC

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stock futures were pointing to a higher open on Wall Street Wednesday after President Obama said he is willing to negotiate with the Republicans if they in exchange work to promptly end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling even if it was only for a temporary four to six weeks.

In news that could calm markets, Obama is expected to nominate Fed Vice Chair Janet Yellen to become the next head of the Federal Reserve. Ben Bernanke's term ends on Jan. 31. Yellen's nomination is expected to be announced at 3 p.m. EDT, and is likely to guarantee a more prolonged period of record accommodative policies. The Fed's current vice-chairman has been an avid supporter of the central bank's current $85 billion bond-buying program. She would be the first woman to take on the Fed chair role.

Prior to the Yellen announcement, the Fed is scheduled to release a summary of its September policy meeting, a gathering at which policymakers maintained the current pace of their bond-buying program amid concerns that current fiscal policy is restraining economic growth. The minutes will be released at 2 p.m.

Futures for the S&P 500 were adding 4 points, or 5.4 points above fair value, to 1,654.5. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 26 points, or 36.47 points above fair value, to 14,740. Futures for the Nasdaq were ahead by 7.25 points, or 12.38 points above fair value, to 3,158.

Vivus shares were popping 3.06% to $10.44 in premarket trading after the company noted that a study published in an American Diabetes Association journal revealed a that the company's Qsymia drug has been demonstrating the ability to reduce the chances that high-risk overweight patients advance to Type 2 diabetes.

Starbucks shares were edging marginally higher to $75.60. CEO Howard Schultz said that the customers who buy coffee for someone else will receive a free tall brewed coffee beginning Wednesday through October 11 to encourage citizens to "come together by supporting one another during a particularly challenging time" in a period marred by a government shutdown and pending debt ceiling resolution.

J.C. Penney Company was advancing 2.96% to $8 on news that current Saks CEO Stephen Sadove will be joining the board of the struggling department store company upon the completion of the buyout of the luxury store chain by Hudson's Bay Co around the end of the year. Sadove has been Saks' CEO since 2006 and has been applauded for his role in boosting e-commerce traffic at Saks.

The FTSE 100 in London was down by 0.11% and the DAX in Germany was up by 0.17%. The Hong Kong Hang Seng settled down by 0.63% while the Nikkei 225 in Japan closed higher by 1.03%.