Morning Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Here are 10 things you should know for Tuesday, March 12:

1. -- U.S. stock futures were pointing to a lower start for Wall Street Tuesday as the red-hot momentum for equities globally lost some steam.

European stocks were mostly flat in early trading while Asian stocks finished with llosses during Tuesday's trading session. Japan's Nikkei 225 index fell 0.3% to close at 12,314.81, putting an end to an eight-day winning streak.

2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. Tuesday includes the Treasury budget for February at 2 p.m. EST.

3. -- U.S. stocks on Monday closed higher, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average posting its fifth-straight record close.

The Dow rose 0.4% to 14,447.29 with 23 stocks gaining and seven declining. The blue-chip index posted an intraday record high of 14,448.06.

The S&P 500 added 5 points, or 0.3%, to close at 1,556.22. The Nasdaq was up 9 points, or 0.3%, to end at 3,252.87.

4. -- Costco Wholesale ( COST), the warehouse retailer, posted fiscal second-quarter earnings of $547 million, or $1.24 share, up from year-earlier earnings of $394 million, or 90 cents a share.

The latest quarter includes a tax benefit of 14 cents a share.

Net sales in the second quarter rose 8.2% to $24.34 billion. Including membership fees, net revenue was $24.87 billion.

Same-store sales in the quarter jumped 5%.

Analysts were expecting earnings of $1.06 a share on revenue of $25.13 billion.

5. -- Yum! Brands ( YUM) reported Monday a decline of 20% in its same-store sales in China for January and February, but that was better than the company's forecast of a 25% drop.

The company's sales in China have been hurt in recent months by a food scare over its chicken suppliers.

Yum! owns KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut restaurants.

6. -- KKR ( KKR) is considering teaming with other private-equity firms to pursue a buyout of Life Technologies ( LIFE), The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

At least two other strategic buyers, Danaher ( DHR) and Thermo Fisher Scientific ( TMO) are weighing bids for biotech firm Life Technologies, according to other people, the newspaper said.

7. -- Urban Outfitters ( URBN) posted fourth-quarter net income of $82.5 million, or 56 cents a share, on revenue of $856.8 million.

Analysts were expecting earnings of 57 cents a share on sales of $850.5 million.

8. -- VeriFone Systems ( PAY) said Monday that CEO Douglas Bergeron was stepping down after 12 years with the company.

9. -- Roman Catholic cardinals gathered Tuesday in Vatican City to begin the process of electing a new pope, following the Feb. 11 announcement from Pope Benedict XVI that he would resign.

10. -- A judge struck down New York City's ban on big sugary drinks Monday just hours before it was supposed to take effect, but Mayor Michael Bloomberg said he'd press on with the anti-obesity effort.

-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

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Copyright 2013 Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

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