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US STOCKS-S&P 500, Dow set for record open as investors eye tech earnings

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·3 min read
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(For a Reuters live blog on U.S., UK and European stock markets, click LIVE/ or type LIVE/ in a news window.)

* Facebook gains on results, share buyback plan

* 3M falls as supply chain disruptions hit outlook

* UPS rises as results beat on e-commerce demand

* Futures up: Dow 0.32%, S&P 0.39%, Nasdaq 0.57% (Adds comment, details; updates prices)

By Devik Jain and Shashank Nayar

Oct 26 (Reuters) - The S&P 500 and the Dow were set for record open on Tuesday as Facebook rose after its quarterly results and a share buyback plan, turning the spotlight on its technology peers set to report later in the day.

Facebook Inc rose 0.8% in premarket trading even as the social media giant warned that Apple Inc's new privacy changes would weigh on its digital business in the current quarter. The company announced $50 billion in share buybacks, while posting a 17% rise in third-quarter profit.

"Facebook has had a few weak sessions lately and it beating profit estimates for the quarter has provided support to the stock, but it is not out of the woods yet with a lower guidance leading to some caution among investors," said Robert Pavlik, senior portfolio manager at Dakota Wealth in Fairfield, Connecticut.

Shares of Twitter Inc, which also generates revenue by selling digital ads, added 1.4% ahead of its results on Tuesday.

Eyes are also on quarterly updates from Alphabet Inc and Microsoft Corp after market close, with focus on how Google's ad revenue fares. Their shares, coupled with other growth names Amazon.com and Apple, were up between 0.3% and 1.5%.

United Parcel Service Inc gained 4.0% after the delivery firm reported a 23% rise in quarterly profit, bolstered by high e-commerce demand.

Some stellar earnings reports have helped drive the Dow and the S&P 500 to record highs, lifting investor sentiment in October after concerns around inflation, the Fed's tapering and property group China Evergrande's crisis rattled markets last month. The tech-heavy Nasdaq is trading about 1.2% below its Sept 7 record high.

Earnings at S&P 500 companies are expected to grow 34.8% year-on-year for the third quarter, with market participants assessing how companies are navigating supply-chain bottlenecks, labor shortages and inflationary pressures. Industrial conglomerates General Electric Co and 3M Co flagged concerns around global supply chain disruptions and soaring raw material prices hitting their businesses.

Though shares of General Electric rose 1.5% after it raised its full-year earnings forecast, 3M Co slipped 0.6% on lowering its annual profit outlook.

"Inflation and supply chain troubles don't seem to be an issue in the near term as the market right now is just focused on the quarterly performance and with calm benchmark rates, it only helps with the mood," Pavlik said.

At 8:44 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 114 points, or 0.32%, S&P 500 e-minis were up 17.75 points, or 0.39%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 88.75 points, or 0.57%.

On the economic data front, consumer confidence data for October is due at 10 a.m. ET.

Gains in economically sensitive industrials Boeing Co and Caterpillar Inc also boosted the futures tracking the blue-chip Dow.

Tesla Inc slipped 0.7%, a day after the electric-carmaker surpassed $1 trillion in market value after landing its biggest-ever order from rental car company Hertz. (Reporting by Devik Jain and Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)

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