Published: May 22, 2012 1:57 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) - U.S. stock futures are rising ahead of a report expected to signal further gains in housing, but a downgrade of Japan's credit rating sent an early shudder through the market.
 
Dow Jones industrial average futures are up 22 points at 12,512. Standard & Poor's 500 index futures are up 3.3 points to 1,319. Nasdaq composite index futures are up 7 points to 2,550.50.
 
Futures turned negative briefly after Fitch cited spiraling debt as it lowered Japan's credit rating Tuesday.
 
That has been the narrative in May as worrisome news from oversees counters what appears to be a slow but sustained recovery in the U.S.
 
.Economists predicted that sales of previously occupied homes rose 2.9 percent in April. The report is due at 10 a.m. Eastern by the National Association of Realtors.