2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. Thursday includes weekly initial jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. EDT, the Philiadelphia Fed index for July at 10 a.m. and leading indicators for June at 10 a.m.
3. -- U.S. stocks on Wednesday rose as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke reiterated an accommodative tone on monetary policy, easing concern the central bank is seeking to curb the bond-buying stimulus program that has helped boost equity markets for more than 18 months. The S&P 500 rose 0.3% to 1,680.91, extending the index's 2013 advance to 18%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.1% to 15,470.52 while the Nasdaq added 0.3% to 3,610.
4. -- Dell (DELL) shareholders vote Thursday on founder and CEO Michael Dell's plan to take the PC company private in a $24.4 billion deal but the deal has received new opposition from the likes of big investors Vanguard Group, State Street and BlackRock, The Wall Street Journal reported. Michael Dell and his advisers were weighing how to respond to the latest developments. People involved in the transaction said they were expecting to delay the scheduled shareholder vote, the newspaper said. The latest opposition would bring the count of known planned negative votes to close to 30% of Dell shareholders, according to the Journal.
5. -- Verizon Communications (VZ - Get Report) is forecast by Wall Street to report on Thursday second-quarter earnings of 72 cents a share on revenue of $29.83 billion. Verizon, parent of No. 1 wireless carrier Verizon Wireless, earned 64 cents a share in the second quarter of 2012 on revenue of $28.55 billion.
6. -- Google (GOOG - Get Report) is expected to post earnings of $10.78 a share in the second quarter on revenue of $14.42 billion. Investors will be monitoring cost-per-clicks on Google, as the search giant continues to generate most of its revenue through advertising. .
7. -- Intel (INTC - Get Report) missed second-quarter earnings estimates, and the world's largest chipmaker revised guidance lower. Intel reported on Wednesday earnings of 39 cents a share on revenue of $12.81 billion; analysts were calling for earnings of 39 cents to 40 cents a share on revenue of $12.9 billion. For the third quarter, Intel said it expects revenue to be $13.5 billion, plus or minus $500 million. Gross margins would be about 61%, plus or minus a couple of percentage points. For the full year, Intel revised revenue guidance lower, saying it now expects it to be "approximately flat year-on-year, down from prior expectations of low single digit percentage increase."