Stock futures gained Monday morning, steadying after last week's volatility as investors looked ahead to a key event from the Federal Reserve later this week.

S&P 500 futures rose by more than 0.3%, led by gains in energy stocks as oil prices advanced. U.S. West Texas intermediate crude oil futures (CL=F) topped $64 a barrel, and Brent crude (BZ=F) jumped above $67 per barrel after suffering its longest losing streak since early 2018 as of last week. 

Contracts on the Dow were set to open higher by more than 150 points, or 0.4%, as shares of Chevron (CVX) and Boeing (BA) outperformed. Shares of pharmaceutical company Pfizer (PFE) rose nearly 4% after announcing it will acquire the cancer drugmaker Trillium Therapeutics (TRIL) for $2.3 billion, adding to positive sentiment following separate reports that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is set to fully approve the company's top-selling COVID-19 vaccine this week following months of use under emergency authorization. 

Stocks came under pressure late last week after the Federal Open Market Committee's July meeting minutes signaled that "most" Fed participants believed the economy will have recovered enough to warrant the start of asset-purchase tapering by the end of this year. The S&P 500 posted its first weekly decline in three weeks, albeit while closing out Friday's session to the upside. Central bank officials are set to hold their annual Jackson Hole Symposium this week starting on Thursday, which could serve as a forum for more remarks about the size and scope of the Fed's tapering plans. 

A host of new earnings and economic data have also come in. On the whole, corporate profits have been exceptionally strong, with nearly 90% of S&P 500 companies having topped consensus earnings per share estimates, according to FactSet. That's come even as concerns over the spread of the Delta variant have resurged and issues around supply chain and materials and labor shortages have remained. 

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"I think we certainly are not going to get the kind of fiscal stimulus that we've had over the past year-and-a-half, nor the monetary stimulus. So I think overall, the market's handling all this remarkably well," Ed Yardeni, Yardeni Research president and chief investment officer, told Yahoo Finance. "The perception is that the Federal Reserve is now seriously moving in the direction of tapering because the economy is doing fine. But any way you slice it or dice it, it's going to be slower growth, slower earnings growth, slower economic growth, and that's probably keeping the bond yield down and giving some weakness to the oil patch."

7:23 a.m. ET Monday: Stock futures point to a higher open:

Here's where markets were trading ahead of the opening bell:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): +14.5 points (+0.33%) at 4,451.50

  • Dow futures (YM=F): +144.00 points (+0.41%) to 35,202.00

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): +43.75 points (+0.29%) to 15,130.50

  • Crude (CL=F): +$1.75 (+2.82%) to $63.89 a barrel

  • Gold (GC=F): +$8.80 (+0.49%) to $1,792.80 per ounce

  • 10-year Treasury (^TNX): +1.2 bps to yield 1.272%

Traders work at the trading floor in the New York Stock Exchange in New York, the United States, Aug. 19, 2021. The S&P 500 Index closed at 4,405.80 points, up 5.53 points, or 0.13 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 34,894.12 points, down 66.57 points, or 0.19 percent.The Nasdaq Composite Index closed at 14,541.79 points, up 15.88 points, or 0.11 percent. (Photo by Wang Ying/Xinhua via Getty Images)

Emily McCormick is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @emily_mcck

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