MARKET PREVIEW: Techs eye economic news

Economic news comes back into the spotlight Wednesday, with the inflation-indicative PPI report. Microsoft, not to be forgotten, is offering shares of its first spin-off Expedia, which will vie with UPS for IPO attention. Asia and Europe charged ahead, and the Dow is set to open slightly higher.

U.S.

The Producer Price Index, a government report on October producers' costs, is expected to confirm little inflation pressure, could convince the Federal Reserve to go easy on interest rates when it meets next week.

The day's IPOs will try to suck a lot of money out of the market Wednesday. Demand was even stronger for United Parcel Service (Nasdaq: UPS), which priced shares at a whopping $50 each, making it the largest US IPO ever. Expedia Inc. (Nasdaq: EXPE), a spin-off of Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT)'s Internet travel service priced at $14 -- $2 above the proposed range of $10 to $12.

Expect the following technology stocks to be among Wednesday's most actively traded issues: Cisco Systems, surging on its better-than-expected earnings, Teligent, 24/7 Media and, of course, UPS.

Technology investors took some profits Tuesday, pushing the Nasdaq composite down 19 points to 3,214.94 on record volume of 1.46 billion shares exchanged. The Dow Jones industrial average closed off 102 points to 10,617.32.

At the Bell

The Dow Jones industrial average may open about 28 points higher. The Standard & Poor's 500 index for June futures contracts was up 3.7 points to 1376 at 7:33 a.m. EST in 24-hour electronic trading.

The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index was down 3 to 393.61.

Asia

Trading in Asia was surging forward. The Nikkei 225 rose 1.51 percent to 18,568, Singapore's Strait Times index gained 0.98 percent to 2,139 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng bounded 2.24 percent to 13,976.

Europe

European markets were moving up. London's FTSE 100 rose 0.45 percent to 6,465. The CAC 40 in Paris gained 0.78 percent to 4,036 and the Xetra DAX in Frankfurt was up 0.25 percent to 5,709 at 7:04 a.m. EST.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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