2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. Friday is bare.
3. -- U.S. stocks on Thursday fell the most in 19 months Thursday on fears the Fed plans to reduce the bond-buying that has fueled equity markets for more than a year and kept mortgage rates at historic lows. The S&P 500 dropped 2.5% to close at 1,588.19. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 2.34% to 14,758.32. The Nasdaq shed 2.28% to 3,364.63.
4. -- Sprint ( S) raised its buyout offer for Clearwire ( CLWR) to $5 a share, as the No. 3 telecom tries to thwart a rival bid from Dish Network ( DISH). Sprint's $5-a-share offer and the bid's acceptance from a special committee of Clearwire's board indicates that Sprint is trying to finish its merger ahead of key shareholder meetings through June. The revised offer, a 47% premium from Sprint's last $3.40-a-share bid for Clearwire, also signals the company is caving to pressure from Dish. Dish has frustrated Sprint's plans at a merger with Japanese telecom SoftBank and in its acquisition of Clearwire, causing rising takeover prices at multiple stages of a near one-year long consolidation effort. Softbank said Friday it was confident it would close its acquisition of Sprint in early July. With valuable wireless spectrum assets, Clearwire is an important piece of Sprint's multi-billion dollar, multi-year effort to revamp its wireless service and better serve rising smartphone data usage.
5. -- Oracle ( ORCL) reported fiscal fourth-quarter earnings that met Wall Street expectations, hiked its dividend, and extended its share buyback program. But the stock declined in after-hours trading Thursday as investors fixated on the company's disappointing and flat revenue growth, as its cloud ambitions were met with sluggish-looking results. Cloud is supposed have been a key area of future growth for Oracle as the company tries to manage a transition to a cloud architecture from its traditional client-server architecture. Oracle reported earnings of 87 cents a share, up 5% from a year earlier. Revenue was unchanged at $11 billion. Analysts were expecting sales of $11.12 billion.
6. -- Apple ( AAPL) won a patent infringement lawsuit against Samsung in a Japanese court, one of many legal battles around the world between the technology companies. The Tokyo District Court issued a partial verdict Friday in favor of Apple in the case that centered on "bounce-back" technology for scrolling on devices. Damages weren't announced.
7. -- Facebook ( FB) and Instagram announced on Thursday that the photo-sharing social network is adding a video component to its network, called Video on Instagram. The app, available for both Apple's iOS and Google's ( GOOG) Android, allows users to take 15-second videos of what they are recording. The app also allows users to re-record the video if the video is marred by an accidental clip.
8. -- The Conference Board said Thursday it will no longer provide its economic reports in advance to news organizations because it suspects the data is being diverted early to computer-driven trading systems, The Associated Press reported. The Conference Board traditionally provided the monthly data to reporters 30 minutes before its public release. Starting Tuesday, the data will be released to everyone simultaneously, AP said.