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US stocks to edge cautiously higher ahead of Yellen speech

Not only Janet Yellen, but her predecessor Bob Bernanke too at Harvard today

Janet Yellen
The Federal Reserve chair is set to speak at Harvard Uni today

Stocks are set to open modestly higher ahead of today's speech at Harvard university by Janet Yellen, the head of the Federal Reserve.

Attendees will get two for the price of one, as former Fed boss Ben Bernanke is also set to speak, but it is Yellen's thoughts on the future path of interest rates to which investors will be paying most attention.

The S&P 500 is tipped to start almost three points up for last night's close of 2,090, while the Dow Jones average is expected to jump 20 points to 17,848 at the outset.

The second stab at measuring first quarter gross domestic product indicated that the US economy grew at an annualised 0.8%, versus a preliminary reading of a 0.5% rise.

The oil price, having made a brief foray above the $50 a barrel level, is back below it.

West Texas intermediate crude was off just over 1%, or 50 cents, at $48.98 a barrel.

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