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TheStreet Open House

Morning Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Here are 10 things you should know for Wednesday, March 20:

1. -- U.S. stock futures were pointing to gains on Wall Street Wednesday as investors turned their attention to the Federal Reserve's rate decision and away from Cypriot lawmakers' rejection of a bailout proposal.

European shares were higher in early trading. Asian stocks ended mixed; markets in Japan were closed for a public holiday.


2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. Wednesday includes the rate decision from the Federal Open Market Committee at 2 p.m. EDT.


3. -- U.S. stocks on Tuesday finished mixed after the Cypriot parliament defeated a measure to levy a tax on bank deposits in the small Mediterranean island nation-state.

The news eclipsed encouraging U.S. housing market data for February.

The S&P 500 fell 0.24% to 1,548.34, to book a three-day losing streak, its longest in 2013. The Nasdaq fell 0.26% to 3,229.10.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average inched slightly higher by 3.76 points, or 0.03%, to 14,455.82.


4. -- Oracle (ORCL), which reports earnings after Wednesday's closing bell, is expected by analysts to post fiscal third-quarter adjusted earnings of 66 cents a share.

Revenue for the maker of business software is forecast to come in at $9.38 billion in the quarter, which ended in February.


5. -- Shipping giant FedEx (FDX) is expected by Wall Street on Wednesday to report fiscal third-quarter earnings of $1.39 a share on revenue of $10.85 billion, up 3% from a year earlier.


6. -- JPMorgan Chase's (JPM) management rating was downgraded one notch by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to a level that signifies oversight "needs improvement," following the "London whale" trading losses in 2012, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the regulatory assessment.


7. -- Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) is scheduled Wednesday to hold its annual meeting, with shareholders seeking the ouster of five of the PC maker's 11 board members following questionable acquisitions.


8. -- Wall Street expect Cheerios maker General Mills (GIS) to report fiscal third-quarter profit on Wednesday of 57 cents a share on revenue of $4.36 billion.


9. -- Adobe Systems' (ADBE) fiscal first-quarter results, released on Tuesday, topped analysts' expectations.

Adobe posted earnings of 35 cents a share, excluding items, on revenue of $1.01 billion. Analysts were looking for net income of 31 cents share on sales of $985.2 million.


10. -- General Electric (GE) may consider spinning off its GE Capital unit, though it's not currently pursuing any such move, Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt said Tuesday, according to a report from MarketWatch.


-- Written by Joseph Woelfel



>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Joseph Woelfel

>To submit a news tip, send an email to: tips@thestreet.com.

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