NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Stock futures were pointing to a stronger open Thursday, likely helped a bit by tech stocks' rally on Wednesday, when Appleundefined and IBM (IBM) - Get International Business Machines Corporation Report posted record highs.
Apple stock crossed the $300 mark
for the first time Wednesday, as investors reacted positively to growth potential for the iPhone 4 and iPad. The stock was up 0.77% to $302.46 in premarket trading.
Meanwhile, IBM stock hit above $400 for the first time, as it announced the
. Big Blue shares were up 0.35% to $140.86 in premarket trading.
Rumors swirled late Wednesday that
and a group of private equity investors could look to buy out
, following a story in the
Wall Street Journal
. Talks are still in very preliminary stages and Yahoo! has not yet become involved in the process, the report said. Yahoo's stock spiked 13.11% in premarket trading in response.
announced a new partnership Wednesday afternoon that will incorporate the social network's data into Bing's search results to improve relevance.
of 500 million users and provide search results based on this data.
For example, if a user is searching for a movie, Bing will make a recommendation based on friend's preferences.
Microsoft's stock closed at $25.34 Wednesday and was down 20 cents in premarket trading Thursday.
captured 66.1% of the U.S. search market for the month of September up from 65.4% the previous month, according to Comscore. Yahoo and Microsoft lagged far behind with 16.7% and 11.2% share, respectively.
Google shares rose 0.35% or $1.91 Wednesday to close at $543.30 and was up 75 cents in premarket trading Thursday.
Following on similar sentiment we heard from
executives, research shop Gartner reported late Wednesday that consumer demand for PCs is soft. Even so, Gartner said that global PC shipments increased 7.6% in the third quarter, with
solidly in the market share lead holding 17.5% of the world's PC market, which is down from 18.9% a year ago. HP also rules the U.S. market, holding roughly 25%; Dell is second at 23.8%.
--Written by Olivia Oran in New York.
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