Among techs, Dell rose after billionaire investor Carl Icahn sent a letter to Dell holders proposing the tech giant commence a tender offer for 1.1 billion shares at $14 a share. Icahn also announced a purchase of 72 million Dell shares fro Southeastern Asset Management.
Hewlett-Packard climbed to hit a new 52-week high after the tech company said that Todd Bradley, the head of its largest unit, printing and personal computers, will move to a new role heading up HP's Strategic Growth Initiatives.
Sony rallied after U.S. hedge fund Third Point raised its stake in the Japanese electronics giant to 70 million shares. Third Point CEO Daniel Loeb also urged Sony to spin-off its entertainment division, and offered to sit on Sony's Board of Directors.
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Adobe Systems and La-Z-Boy are among companies slated to post earnings after the closing bell.
On the economic front, housing starts rose 6.8 percent in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 914,000 units, according to the Commerce Department, missing expectations for a 950,000-unit rate.
Meanwhile, consumer prices edged up 0.1 percent in May, according to the Labor Department. Consumer prices outside of food and energy rose 0.2 percent last month, just above the pace clocked in April.
Outside of the U.S., the G-8 summit will wrap up in Northern Ireland. Talks continue between the European Union and the U.S. regarding the creation of the world's largest free-trade zone, despite France's determination to protect and exclude its cultural industries from the deal.
(Read More: EU, US Launch Trade Talks, France Stiff-Necked)