2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. Thursday includes weekly jobless claims, international trade data for January, and fourth-quarter productivity figures, all at 8:30 a.m. EST.
3. -- U.S. stocks on Wednesday finished mixed but the Dow Jones Industrial Average broke its record-high closing for a second-straight day after a better-than-expected ADP employment report. The Dow rose 42.47 points, or 0.3%, to close at 14,296.24. The S&P 500 rose 1.67 points, or 0.11%, to finish at 1,541.46. The Nasdaq closed off 1.76 point, or 0.05%, at 3,222.37.
4. -- Carl Icahn reportedly has acquired a stake of about 100 million shares in Dell ( DELL), giving the activist investor a roughly 6% ownership in the PC maker. People familiar with the situation told CNBC that Icahn has met with advisers for Dell's special committee and urged them to pursue a leveraged recapitalization of the company, rather than the $13.65 a share leveraged buyout by Michael Dell and Silver lake that has been agreed to.
5. -- Time Warner ( TWX) plans to spin off Time Inc., the magazine unit that publishes Time, Sports Illustrated and People, into a separate company. The spinoff likely will take place by the end of 2013.
6. -- The National Transportation Safety Board plans to issue an "interim factual report" at 11 a.m. Thursday on its investigation into a battery fire aboard a Japan Airlines Boeing ( BA) 787 Dreamliner plane on Jan. 7, Reuters reported.
7. -- Johnson Controls ( JCI) said Wednesday it's exploring a sale of its automotive electronics business. But the company denied a Reuters report that it was looking to sell its auto interiors unit, saying it has no "current intention" to do so.
8. -- Costco Wholesale ( COST), the warehouse retailer, said Thursday that same-store sales in February rose 6%, higher than analysts' expectations.
9. -- Networking specialist Ciena ( CIEN) is forecast by analysts Thursday to post a fiscal first-quarter loss of 13 cents a share on revenue of $448.3 million.
10. -- Pandora ( P) is forecast by Wall Street to report a fourth-quarter loss on Thursday of 5 cents a share.
-- Written by Joseph Woelfel >To contact the writer of this article, click here: Joseph Woelfel >To submit a news tip, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.