Stock futures up after German vote on bailout fund

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NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stock futures are rising after German lawmakers overwhelmingly approved legislation to expand the powers of Europe’s bailout fund. That reassured investors that the region is working to get its debt problems under control.

The legislation allows the bailout fund to buy government bonds and lend money to troubled governments before they are in a full-blown crisis.

In the U.S., the government is expected to report Thursday that fewer people applied for unemployment benefits last week, although the number is still above levels considered healthy.

About 90 minutes before the opening, Dow Jones industrial average futures are up 62 points, or 0.6 percent, to 11,038. Standard & Poor’s 500 futures are up 6, or 0.6 percent, at 1,155. Nasdaq 100 index futures are up 14, or 0.6 percent, at 2,232.