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Tech Industry

MARKET PREVIEW: Investors eye Microsoft and Lucent open

    Microsoft's final response to the government's break-up plan, and a Lucent acquisition will welcome techs back to the short trading week Tuesday. Asian markets were mixed, Europe moved ahead, and the Dow is set to open considerably higher.


    While Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) continues to steal headlines as its trial winds down, a deal by Lucent (NYSE: LU), rumored to be in the works, may also get some attention. The company is reportedly in discussions to acquire Chromatis Networks, another optical networking company, for about $5.7 billion.

    Japan's NTT DoCoMo Inc. is also reportedly in discussions to acquire a significant stake in VoiceStream Wireless Corp. (Nasdaq: VSTR). The 15 percent to 20 percent stake would be valued at about $4.26 billion, given VoiceStream's market capitalization of $21.3 billion.

    Government regulators stuck to their call for a two-way split for Microsoft in a revised plan issued late Friday. The software giant's attorneys have until Wednesday to file a response.

    Tuesday will bring the first of many economic reports for the week; the May consumer confidence index, which is expected to be up to 137.0 in May from 136.9 in April. Later in the week, readings on new jobs, wages and unemployment, and as industrial activity and sales of new homes and vehicles are due out.

    Expect the following technology stocks to be among Tuesday's most actively traded issues: Lucent, Microsoft, and SDL.

    Investors -- the few who bothered to actually trade -- got what they expected Friday. The Nasdaq composite closed up one-quarter of a point to 3,205.11 in light trading ahead of the holiday weekend.

    At the Bell

    The Dow Jones industrial average may open about 94 points lower. The Standard & Poor's 500 index for June futures contracts was up 12.7 to 1394 at 7:33 a.m. EST in 24-hour electronic trading.

    The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index was down 2 to 398.21.


    Trading in Asia was mixed. The Nikkei 225 fell 0.10 to 16,228, Singapore's Strait Times index fell 1.87 percent to 1,799 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.11 percent to 13,990.


    European markets were headed up. London's FTSE 100 rose 1.41 percent to 6,304. The CAC 40 in Paris slipped 0.43 percent to 6,231 and the DAX in Frankfurt was up 1.16 percent to 7,098 at 7:05 a.m. EST.

    Reuters contributed to this report.