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Feb. 25 Premarket Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

Updated from 6:59 a.m. EST

Here are 10 things you should know for Tuesday, Feb. 25:   

1.-- U.S. stock futures were suggesting Wall Street would open lower on Tuesday ahead of consumer-confidence data.

European stocks were lower in early trading. Asian shares finished mostly lower on Tuesday as markets were rattled by a deceleration in the rise of Chinese housing prices in January and weakness in China's currency. 

2.-- The economic calendar in the U.S. on Tuesday includes the Case-Shiller 20-City Index for December at 9 a.m. EST, the FHFA Housing Price Index for December at 9:30 a.m. and Consumer Confidence for February at 10 a.m.

3.-- U.S. stocks on Monday rose and the S&P 500 hit a fresh record as expectations of a European Union aid package to the Ukraine boosted European markets, while domestic M&A activity continued.

Must Read: Feb. 24 Premarket Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

The  Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.66% to finish at 16,209.13 -- its highest close since Jan. 22 -- while the  S&P 500 gained 0.62% to 1,847.71, after hitting an intraday all-time high of 1,858.71. The  Nasdaq added 0.69% to 4,292.97.

4.-- The nation's biggest home-improvement retailer, Home Depot (HD - Get Report) reported Tuesday fourth-quarter earnings of 73 cents a share, up from from 68 cents a share a year earlier, while revenue fell 3% to $17.7 billion, which was below forecasts.

Wall Street expected Home Depot to report earnings of 71 cents a share on revenue of $17.9 billion.

The company provided a fiscal 2014 earnings forecast below analysts' expectations.

Home Depot raised its quarterly dividend by 21% to 47 cents a share.

Home Depot shares rose 2.5% in premarket trading on Tuesday to $79.80.

-- The Web site of major bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox is offline Tuesday amid reports it suffered a debilitating theft. 

The URL of Tokyo-based Mt. Gox was returning a blank page. The disappearance of the site follows the resignation Sunday of Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles from the board of the Bitcoin Foundation, a group seeking legitimacy for the currency.

A "crisis strategy" report shared widely online that purports to be an internal Mt. Gox document said more than 740,000 bitcoins are missing from the exchange, which froze withdrawals earlier this month. It said the theft went unnoticed for several years and turned on disguised withdrawals.

A theft of that magnitude would equate to losses of $350 million at current bitcoin prices, according to The Associated Press

6. -- LinkedIn (LNKD) plans to launch a Chinese-language site in China, the world's most populous Internet market, and said it will comply with the communist government's censorship rules.

The professional networking service will compete with established Chinese-language services Tianji, owned by France's Viadeo, and homegrown rivals Ruolin and Dajie. LinkedIn said it has 4 million users in China but until now its service was only in English.

LinkedIn was rising 1.6% to $202.75 in premarket trading.

7.-- Retailer Macy's (M) is forecast to report to report fourth-quarter earnings of $2.17 a share.

8.-- Facebook (FB - Get Report) is retiring its email address system, the company told Re/code.

From now on, any emails sent to a users email address -- which all Facebook users could claim upon signing up for the social network -- will now be automatically forwarded to the default personal email address used to sign up for the site, Re/code said.

"We're making this change because most people haven't been using their Facebook email address, and we can focus on improving our mobile messaging experience for everyone," a Facebook spokesperson told Re/code.

Shares were up 0.2% in premarket trading.

9. -- Taco Bell, a unit of Yum! Brands (YUM), will launch its national breakfast menu on March 27, with items such as the A.M. Crunchwrap designed to appeal to its fan base of younger men. The chain said breakfast will be available until 11 a.m., a half-hour later than McDonald's offers its breakfast items. 

10.-- Ben Bernanke, who stepped down last month after eight years as chairman of the Federal Reserve, is planning a memoir.

Bernanke told The Associated Press that he will focus not just on the defining moment of his time at the Fed -- the 2008 financial crisis -- but on the "Great Recession" that followed.

"I want people to understand what we knew, when we knew it, how we made decisions and how we dealt with the enormous economic uncertainty," said Bernanke, who expects to begin meeting with publishers within the next several weeks.

-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

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

To submit a news tip, send an email

Follow @josephwoe58


Copyright 2014 Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

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