July 23, 2014 / 1:00 PM / 4 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St set to rise on earnings; world conflicts eyed

* Microsoft sees end to Nokia losses, shares rise

* Boeing shares rise as deliveries boost earnings

* Futures up: Dow 13 pts, S&P 3 pts, Nasdaq 12 pts (Updates prices)

By Rodrigo Campos

NEW YORK, July 23 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were set to rise slightly at the open on Wednesday, boosted by bullish earnings from companies like Boeing, Pepsi and Microsoft, though conflicts in Ukraine and the Gaza Strip weighed on investor confidence.

* Microsoft shares rose 1.4 percent in premarket trading a day after it said it aimed to get its loss-making Nokia phone unit to break even within two years.

* Boeing added 1.2 percent in premarket trading after it reported a 52 percent jump in quarterly profit on higher commercial aircraft deliveries.

* PepsiCo rose 2.1 percent before the opening bell after it reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit and raised its full-year adjusted earnings forecast.

* Apple shares edged 0.7 percent higher even as it posted a smaller-than-expected 6 percent rise in quarterly revenue Tuesday. Sales surged 28 percent in greater China despite stiff competition in its third-largest market.

* S&P 500 e-mini futures were up 3 points and fair value - a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the contract - indicated a slightly higher open. Dow Jones industrial average e-mini futures rose 13 points and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures added 12 points.

* In a blow to Israel’s economy and a public relations coup for Hamas, U.S. and European air carriers halted flights to Tel Aviv, citing concern over a militant rocket from Gaza that hit a house near the city’s airport. Israel urged reconsideration of the decision, saying its air space was safe.

* Bells pealed and flags flew at half mast across the Netherlands, on a day of grief tinged with anger, ahead of the arrival of the first bodies of victims from a Malaysian airliner that was shot down over Ukraine last week. Many of the 298 deceased were Dutch.

* Separately, pro-Russian rebels have shot down two Ukrainian fighter jets not far from where the Malaysian jet was brought down in eastern Ukraine, a spokesman for Ukraine’s military operations said Wednesday.

* Biogen Idec reported sharply higher-than-expected quarterly revenue on surging sales of its new treatment for multiple sclerosis and raised its full-year profit forecast. Shares were up 8 percent in premarket trading.

* Intuitive Surgical rose 12.2 percent in premarket a day after it posted second-quarter earnings that were better than its dismal first quarter, even as it posted its fifth straight quarterly earnings decline.

* Puma Biotechnology shares soared 272 percent to $220 in premarket trading, a day after it said its experimental breast cancer drug met its main goal in a late-stage trial.

Editing by Bernadette Baum

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