Before the bell: Futures point to higher start ahead of economic data

U.S. stock futures were higher Thursday morning, pointing to a stronger start on Wall Street. Investors will likely continue to focus on the economy this morning as weekly jobs data and an inflation index is on the docket. While investors are still jittery about the economy, it is perhaps the past few downbeat sessions that has them also looking past Hewlett-Packard's (HPQ) lackluster guidance.

As expected, President Obama announced Wednesday a plan that would cost $75 billion to help about 9 million Americans on the brink of foreclosure. The lending plan aims to stabilize the worst-hit housing markets.