NEW YORK -- U.S. stock futures rose Tuesday on hopes that European leaders were moving closer to a plan to contain the region's debt crisis.
Greece's finance minister said the country would receive the next round of bailout loans in time to avoid a devastating default. Greece was at risk of running out of money by mid-October if it did not receive the funds.
Chancellor Angela Merkel also said Germany would do whatever it could to help Greece regain investors' confidence. She did not outline any specific measures. But Merkel and Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou are set to meet later in the day, and investors expect the two leaders will discuss new ways to solve the debt problems.
About 30 minutes before the opening, Dow Jones industrial futures are up 172 points, or 1.6 percent, to 11,144.
Standard & Poor's 500 index futures are up 19, or 1.7 percent, at 1,177. Nasdaq 100 index futures are up 34, or 1.5 percent, at 2,260.
Worries about Europe have weighed on the stock market for months. The S&P 500, a benchmark for many U.S. mutual funds, has fallen 9.2 percent over the past three months. It's down 7.5 percent for the year.
Analysts say more needs to be done to fight Europe's debt crisis. Finance ministers have been pushing to increase the size of Europe's rescue fund. Economists also want the European Central Bank to lower interest rates to help spur the economy.
President Barack Obama said in a town hall meeting Monday that Europe's financial crisis "is scaring the world" and that the actions the region's leaders have taken so far "haven't been as quick as they need to be."
In the U.S., a report Tuesday is expected to show that consumer confidence improved slightly in September after plummeting in August. Shoppers are still continuing to spend, and analysts predict that holiday spending will increase this year -- a good sign for retailers.
In corporate news, Walgreen Co. fell 1.5 percent ahead of the opening after the drugstore operator said it is ending its relationship with Express Scripts Inc. That deal is worth $5.3 billion per year, but Walgreen said Express Scripts was not paying it enough money to fill prescriptions.