By Caitlin Ostroff
-- U.S. stock futures rise
-- European, Asian stocks up
-- Treasury yields tick higher
Global stocks climbed on hopes that Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell would provide clear signals of interest-rate cuts in a closely watched speech later Friday.
In the U.S., futures on the S&P 500 were up 0.3% and Dow Jones Industrial Average futures gained 0.2%. Futures don't necessarily predict moves after the opening bell.
In premarket trading, shares in Salesforce.com rose 6.6% after the business-software provider raised its revenue forecast and reported record results in the latest quarter. Premarket shares in HP fell 7.6% after the company's chief executive quit.
The Stoxx Europe 600 was up 0.6% in midday trade after a broadly positive session in Asia, with the U.K.'s FTSE 100 up 0.8% and the German DAX 0.4% higher.
Markets will be watching for clarity from Mr. Powell and other central-bank leaders at the Jackson Hole symposium on the likelihood of further moves to lift a stagnant global economy.
Lower interest rates would likely drive down bond yields further and rally equities, said Connor Campbell, a financial analyst at Spreadex. "They're putting a lot of their eggs in a central-bank basket," Mr. Campbell said of stock-market investors.
Mr. Powell is set to speak Friday at 10 a.m. ET. Bank of England Gov. Mark Carney will speak later in the day.
Analysts said the Fed chairman will have to show he is willing to take strong action to support the economy. Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan said Thursday at the gathering of central bankers that he was open to cutting rates in September.
Though Mr. Kaplan came out in support, other officials were split. In television interviews Thursday, the head of the Kansas City Fed and the Philadelphia Fed pushed back against the need for further rate cuts. In July, the Fed lowered its benchmark rate to a range between 2% and 2.25%.
Friday's rises in stocks came a day after a series of weak manufacturing data around the world had raised concerns about a possible recession, weighing on U.S. indexes.
The yield on 10-year Treasurys rose to 1.638% on Friday, from 1.613% on Thursday, while the two-year Treasury yield rose to 1.630%, from 1.606%. Bond yields and prices move in opposite directions.
The 10-year yield on Thursday briefly fell below two-year yields, following a similar move last week. The inversion between short- and long-term yields has been widely viewed as a possible recession signal.
Gains in Europe were led by technology firms, with the sector up 0.8%. Shares in Denmark-based construction materials company Rockwool International dropped 14% after it slashed its sales forecast, citing market volatility.
Toronto-based and U.K.-listed Entertainment One's shares jumped 31% after toy maker Hasbro said it would buy it for $4 billion. Hasbro's shares fell 3.5% in U.S. premarket trading.
In currencies, the pound fell 0.3% against the U.S. dollar to $1.2216. The WSJ Dollar Index, which measures the currency against a basket of its peers, ticked up 0.2%.