Here are 10 things you should know for Friday, Jan. 17:
1.-- U.S. stock futures were rising Friday though paring gains following a decline in housing starts and after earnings reports from General Electric (GE) and Morgan Stanley (MS).
2.-- Housing starts in December fell 9.8% compared with an increase of 23.1% in November; the decline is the biggest drop since April 2013, according to Reuters.
Industrial production and capacity utilization figures for December are scheduled for 9:15 a.m. EST, and the University of Michigan index of sentiment for January is set for 9:55 a.m.
3.-- U.S. stocks on Thursday closed lower amid a spate of lackluster corporate earnings.
The S&P 500 finished off 0.13% to 1,845.89 while the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.39% at 16,417.01. The Nasdaq rose 0.09% to close at 4,218.69.
4.-- GE reported on Friday fourth-quarter industrial profit margin of 18.3%, up 100 basis points from a year earlier.
The conglomerate fell just shy of hitting its goal of a 70-basis-point improvement for its industrial margin of 2013, which rose 66 basis points from the previous year to 15.72%, excluding acquisitions.
GE reported fourth-quarter operating earnings of $5.42 billion, or 53 cents a share, up from $4.66 billion, or 44 cents a share, a year earlier. Fourth-quarter EPS, up 20%, met the consensus estimate among analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.
Revenue for the fourth quarter was $40.382 billion, increasing from $29.162 billion a year earlier.
GE shares fell 1.7% in premarket trading Friday to $26.74.
Net revenue of $7.8 billion for the fourth quarter compared with $7 billion a year ago and $7.93 billion in the third quarter. Full-year revenue was $32.4 billion compared to $26.1 billion in 2012. Income from continuing operations was $3.1 billion, or $1.43 a share, compared with income of $138 million, or 2 cents a share, in 2012.
Morgan Stanley shares rose 1.25% to $32.40 in premarket trading.
6.-- Intel (INTC), the world's biggest chipmaker, missed Wall Street estimates, sending shares lower by more than 3% in after-hours trading on Thursday.
Intel posted earnings of 51 cents a share in the fourth quarter on revenue of $13.8 billion. Gross margins came in at 62%.
Analysts expected Intel to earn 52 cents a share on revenue of $13.71 billion.
Intel noted its PC Client Group generated $8.6 billion in sales during the quarter, up 2% sequentially and flat from last year, as the segment looks to be bottoming out.
Intel shares fell 4.1% to $25.44 in premarket trading. 7.-- Yahoo!'s (YHOO) Editor-in-Chief Jai Singh has quit the company, according to RE/CODE, a departure that comes in the wake of changes made to its media unit after the firing of Chief Operating Officer Henrique de Castro on Wednesday.
Under a new plan announced by CEO Marissa Mayer in an internal memo, the media unit will now be run by Chief Marketing Officer Kathy Savitt, RE/CODE reported.
TechCrunch reported it received confirmation of Singh's exit from a Yahoo! spokesperson.
The stock fell slightly to $40.30. 8.-- Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) issued a fourth-quarter profit warning, saying Friday that results will be worse than most analysts expected due to a mix of lower production, higher costs, and a worse performance by its refining division.
The oil giant provided on Friday preliminary fourth-quarter net profit of $1.8 billion (1.32 billion euros), down from $6.7 billion in the same period a year earlier.
IBM rose 0.1% to $189 in premarket trading. 10.-- The Sacramento Kings will be the first major professional sports franchise to accept Bitcoin virtual currency for ticket and merchandise purchases.
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