Futures are a little higher ahead of the market open

Stock futures were just a bit higher on Monday morning before the market open.

Near 8:26 a.m. ET, Dow futures were up 15 points, S&P 500 futures were up 3, and Nasdaq futures were up 6 points.

Stocks rallied on Friday after the March jobs report that was better than expected, and manufacturing data showed the sector improved last month.

Crude oil was nearly flat, with West Texas Intermediate crude futures in New York trading near $36.71 per barrel. WTI fell 4% on Friday after Saudi Arabia said it would only agree to a production freeze agreement if Iran is on board.

The economic data calendar is light this week. At 10 a.m. ET, February factory orders will be released with durable goods orders.

In the coming days, we’ll get much more Fed speak, including a panel between Janet Yellen, Paul Volcker, Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke on Thursday. The Minneapolis Fed’s Neel Kashkari and Boston’s Eric Rosengren take the mic today. You can read our full preview of the week’s big economic events here.

Earlier, Alaska Air announced it is acquiring Virgin America for $2.6 billion, or $4 billion including debt. Alaska Air outbid JetBlue.

The combined company hopes to be a leading West-coast-based airliner. It hopes to achieve $225 million in annual cost-saving synergies.

Virgin Group founder Richard Branson is not really about this deal. “I would be lying if I didn’t admit sadness that our wonderful airline is merging with another,” he wrote in a post Monday. He lamented how his influence on the deal was restricted by regulations that made some of his shares non-voting.

Virgin America shares rose as much as 36% premarket.

NOW WATCH: A psychologist reveals a trick to stop being lazy

NOW WATCH: Money & Markets videos

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.