US STOCKS-Slightly higher open seen, Ireland debt woes weigh

* Ireland debt woes, China inflation could be headwinds

* New home starts slump, consumer prices up 0.2 pct

* GM IPO could raise up to $22.7 bln, be US’s biggest ever

* Futures up: Dow 18 pts, S&P 3 pts, Nasdaq 5.25 pts

* For up-to-the-minute market news see [STXNEWS/US]
(Updates with data, latest prices)

By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK, Nov 17 (BestGrowthStock) – U.S. stock index futures
pointed to a slightly higher open on Wednesday as investors
awaited a resolution of the debt crisis in Ireland.

Renewed concerns over euro zone sovereign debt woes and the
prospect of China raising rates to rein in inflation helped to
sink equities in a broad selloff on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, Ireland said it would work with a European
Union-International Monetary Fund mission to help its
struggling banking sector, a process that could lead to a
bailout despite Dublin’s reluctance. For details, see
[ID:nLDE6AG004]

“Yesterday’s selloff had very little to do with the U.S.
backdrop or fundamentals, and if a plan is reached in Ireland,
that would allow us to return our focus to the U.S., where all
indicators are pointing in the right direction,” said Jason
Pride, director of investment strategy at Glenmede Investment
and Wealth Management in Philadelphia.

“Concerns about Ireland’s situation have somewhat
dissipated, but there isn’t a plan to rectify the situation.
Until there is one, some caution remains.”

In China, the government said it will take forceful
measures to stabilize consumer prices. The news pressured
commodities, sending crude oil down 0.6 percent.
[ID:nTOE6AG067]

In the latest U.S. economic data, new home building slumped
to its lowest level in more than a year in October, while
consumer prices rose, but the annual increase was the smallest
on record. [ID:nN17190977]

S&P 500 futures (SPc1: ) rose 3 points and were above fair
value, a formula that evaluates pricing by taking into account
interest rates, dividends and time to expiration on the
contract. Dow Jones industrial average futures (DJc1: ) added 18
points and Nasdaq 100 futures (NDc1: ) rose 5.25 points.

General Motors Co [GM.UL] set the terms for a landmark IPO
that could be the largest in U.S. history and could raise up to
$22.7 billion. [ID:nN17165039]

If GM has success, it could bode well for Chrysler’s own
planned offering, Fiat SpA (FIA.MI: ) Chief Executive Sergio
Marchionne said late Tuesday. [ID:nN16135148]

Target Corp (TGT.N: ) rallied 2.5 percent to $54.90 before
the bell after higher-than-expected quarterly profit and a
forecast that sales would be the best in three years. BJ’s
Wholesale Club Inc (BJ.N: ) gained 4 percent to $48 after its
earnings topped estimates, [ID:nN17187289] and [ID:nN17285185]

Applied Materials Inc (AMAT.O: ), Limited Brands Inc (LTD.N: )
and NetApp Inc (NTAP.O: ) are also on tap to report later
Wednesday.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp is conducting about 50
criminal investigations of U.S. banks that have failed since
the start of the financial crisis, the Wall Street Journal
reported. [ID:nSGE6AG04G]

Late Tuesday, the CEO of Bank of America Corp (BAC.N: ) said
a quick settlement of the 50-state probe of mortgage
foreclosures would be best for all involved. [ID:nN16144223]
(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

US STOCKS-Slightly higher open seen, Ireland debt woes weigh