Feb. 27 Premarket Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

Updated from 6:58 a.m. EST

Here are 10 things you should know for Thursday, Feb. 27:   

1.-- U.S. stock futures were pointing to a lower open for Wall Street on Thursday while European shares declined on rising tensions in Ukraine.

Asian stocks ended the session mixed. Japan's Nikkei 225 closed lower by 0.3%

2.-- The economic calendar in the U.S. on Thursday includes weekly initial jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. EST, and durable-goods orders for January at 8:30 a.m. Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen is scheduled to testify before the Senate Banking Committee in Washington at 10 a.m.

3.-- U.S. stocks on Wednesday closed little changed after January's new home sales beat expectations, while retailers dominated gains.

The S&P 500 effectively finished unchanged at 1,845.16, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.13% to close at 16,200.34. The Nasdaq rose 0.1% to 4,292.06.

4.-- Reports were emerging that dozens of heavily armed pro-Russia gunmen have seized control of local government buildings in the Ukrainian region of Crimea.

While Russia has raised questions over the legitimacy of the new Ukrainian authorities after President Viktor Yanukovych fled Kiev last week and has initiated surprise military drills, Ukraine has put its domestic security forces on high alert and urged Russian forces not to leave their base in southern Crimea.

5.-- Tesla Motors (TSLA) on Wednesday revealed plans for its battery factory, which has been dubbed Gigafactory. Much to no one's surprise, it's massive.

The carmaker said it expects to reach production unit rates of 500,000 cars per year by 2020 because of the Gigafactory, faster than Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas had noted.  

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