Here are five things you must know for Friday, Dec. 29:
1. -- The Dow Sets Yet Another Record
U.S. stock futures rose on Friday, Dec. 29, the last trading day of 2017, suggesting equities could close out the year with a fresh record high.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average notched another record closing high on Thursday, Dec. 28, its 71st of the year, after the index gained 63.21 points to finish at 24,837.51. After Thursday's close, the Dow has risen nearly 26% in 2017.
The Dow also was on pace for slight weekly gains. The last time the Dow rose in each of the final six full weeks of the year was in 1954, according to CNBC.
European markets traded mixed early Friday while Asian stocks closed the session with modest gains. Japan's Nikkei bucked the trend, however, and declined 0.1%.
The economic calendar in the U.S. on Friday includes Chicago PMI for December at 9:45 a.m. ET. and the weekly Baker Hughes Rig Count at 1 p.m.
2. -- Apple Apologizes
Apple Inc. (AAPL) - Get Report apologized and said it would offer discounted battery replacements for older model iPhones after users discovered that the company's operating system updates deliberately slowed down the devices.
Apple said the operating system changes were made to avoid sudden shutdowns of devices as their batteries age. But some users complained that the degraded speeds actually served as an underhanded trick to drive people to upgrade to a newer phone.
Apple denied that. "We have never -- and would never -- do anything to intentionally shorten the life of any Apple product, or degrade the user experience to drive customer upgrades," the company said in a statement.
Nevertheless, Apple said it would cut the price of replacement batteries for anyone with an iPhone 6 or later to $29 from $79 starting in late January. The company also said it would update its operating system to give users "more visibility into the health of their iPhone's battery.
Apple shares rose slightly in premarket trading.
3. -- SoftBank Buys Big Stake in Uber
SoftBank Group Corp. (SFTBY) , the Japanese tech conglomerate, agreed on Thursday to invest $7.7 billion for a roughly 15% stake in Uber Technologies Inc., including $1.25 billion in fresh capital.
The SoftBank investment, which is expected to close in January, paves the way for Uber to conduct an initial public offering before the end of 2019.
Ride-hailing company Uber has had a tumultuous 2017 with a series of allegations about a sexist corporate culture that led to the ouster of its founder and chief executive, as well as unfavorable government decisions and revelations of hacked customer accounts.
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4. -- Higher Exec Salaries at Netflix
Netflix's chief content officer, Ted Sarandos, will earn a $12 million base salary in 2018, after making just $1 million in each of the past three years, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
CEO Reed Hastings will earn $700,000 in salary in 2018, with $28.7 million in annual stock options, continuing a pattern of decreasing annual salaries and increasing stock awards, the Journal noted. In 2017, Hastings had a salary of $850,000 and a stock allocation of $21.2 million.
5. -- SandRidge Nixes Bonanza Creek Deal
SandRidge Energy Inc. (SD) - Get Report terminated its agreement to acquire Bonanza Creek Energy Inc. (BCEI) - Get Report falling victim to a campaign against the deal that was led by activist investor Carl Icahn.
Soon after SandRidge announced the planned acquisition, initially valued at about $750 million, in November, Icahn, who owns a 13.5% stake in SandRidge, blasted the deal as overpriced.
"We're obviously pleased with the result but we still have grave concerns about many of the things that the board has permitted to happen at the company," Icahn said in an interview with Bloomberg after the announcement.
SandRidge shares rose 1.9% in after-hours trading on Thursday, while Bonanza Creek fell 9.8%.
This story has been updated from 5:55 a.m. ET.
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