March 17, 2020 / 11:48 AM / 24 days ago

US STOCKS-Futures point higher after Wall Street's steepest plunge since 1987

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* Banks rise on plans to access Fed's discount window

* Boeing in talks to seek aid for battered aviation sector

* Regeneron jumps after positive update on COVID-19 treatment

* Futures up: Dow 2.22%, S&P 2.38%, Nasdaq 2.72% (Adds details, updates prices)

By Medha Singh

March 17 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures rose in volatile trading on Tuesday, a day after Wall Street's steepest fall since 1987, as drastic efforts to contain the coronavirus pandemic paralyzed parts of the economy and crushed business sentiment.

The benchmark S&P 500 erased all its gains from 2019 in the previous session as the Federal Reserve's dramatic move to cut interest rates to near zero added to worries about the economic fallout from the outbreak.

Monday marked the S&P 500's third-biggest daily percentage drop on record, beaten only by the 1987 rout and the Great Depression crash.

"It's becoming clearer that at its peak the COVID-19 impact on the global economy will likely be worse than the peak of the global financial crisis," said Jim Reid, a strategist at Deutsche Bank in Guildford, UK.

As governments in the United States and Europe start shutting restaurants and schools, as well as asking people to stay home, strategists are downgrading growth forecasts for the second quarter.

Some investors are going so far as to contemplate outcomes more dire than a recession, including several quarters of declining economic activity, a credit crisis or even a depression.

The three indexes have plunged about 30% from their record closing highs in mid February, ending the U.S. stock market's longest-ever bull run.

At 7:10 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 453 points, or 2.22% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 192.25 points, or 2.72%. S&P 500 e-minis rose 57.5 points or 2.38%.

Big U.S. lenders ticked higher after announcing they would access funding from the Fed's "discount window".

Bank of America Corp, Citigroup Inc, Goldman Sachs Group Inc, JP Morgan Chase & Co, and Wells Fargo & Co rose between 3.0% and 4.6% in premarket trading.

Boeing gained 3% after the planemaker said it was in talks with senior White House officials and congressional leaders about short-term assistance for the entire U.S. aviation sector.

Shares of carriers American Airlines, United Airlines and Delta Air Lines were up more than 2%.

In a bright spot for healthcare stocks, Pfizer Inc gained 3% after the drugmaker signed a deal with Germany's BioNTech SE to co-develop a potential coronavirus vaccine.

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc jumped 14% after the company said it had identified antibodies to potentially treat COVID-19. (Reporting by Medha Singh and Sanjana Shivdas in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Shounak Dasgupta)

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