May 21 Premarket Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

Updated from 6:47 a.m. EDT

Here are 10 things you should know for Wednesday, May 21:

1. -- U.S. stock futures were rising Wednesday reversing losses in the previous session.

European markets were flat to slightly higher, while Asian stocks ended mixed. Japan's Nikkei 225 index fell 0.2%. 

-- The economic calendar in the U.S. on Wednesday includes the minutes from the April 30 meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee. The minutes will be released at 2 p.m. EDT.

3. -- U.S. stocks on Tuesday stumbled on Tuesday after disappointing earnings from retailers. Small caps relinquished Monday's gains, shedding 1.4% amid a cautious backdrop.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.83% to 16,374.31, while the S&P 500 declined 0.65% to 1,872.83. The Nasdaq dropped 0.7% to 4,096.89.

4. -- Netflix (NFLX) plans to expand into Germany, France and four other European countries later this year as the streaming video service tries to build an international following.

The additional markets announced Wednesday will extend Netflix's reach into nearly 50 countries, including 13 in Europe. Besides Germany and France, the latest countries in Netflix's expansion are Switzerland, Austria, Belgium and Luxembourg.

Netflix entered Europe in 2012 when its Internet video service debuted in the U.K. and Ireland.

The stock rose 1% in premarket trading to $375.20.

5. -- Target (TGT) is expected by analysts to report on Wednesday first-quarter earnings of 71 cents a share on revenue of $17.01 billion.

The retailer on Tuesday fired the president of its Canadian operations.

6. -- Google (GOOG) is amassing cash overseas to help finance a foreign shopping spree that could cost the search giant up to $30 billion.

The potential price tag for Google's expansion plans outside the U.S. surfaced Tuesday in documents disclosing the company's response to recent questions raised by the Securities and Exchange Commission, The Associated Press reported.

Pressed to provide more details about its plans for its overseas cash, Google revealed that $20 billion to $30 billion is earmarked for the acquisition of foreign companies and technology rights held outside the U.S. Google didn't specify a timetable for completing the deals or mention any acquisition candidates, according to the AP.

Google rose 0.2% in premarket trading on Wednesday.

7. -- Lowe's (LOW), the home-improvement retailer and rival to Home Depot (HD), reported first-quarter earnings on Wednesday of 61 cents a share, up from 49 cents a year earlier. Revenue rose 2.4% to $13.4 billion.

Analysts were expecting earnings of 60 cents a share on revenue of $13.86 billion.

The company lifted its earnings outlook for the year ending Jan. 30, 2015, to $2.63 a share.

The stock was unchanged in premarket trading at $45.52.

 -- Lenovo, the Chinese computer maker, said annual profit rose 29% to a record high as smartphone sales surged in China and other markets.

Smartphone shipments during the year jumped by nearly three-quarters to 50 million on strong demand in China, Southeast Asia and Eastern Europe, almost matching the 55 million PCs sold in the same period, Lenovo said.

Lenovo reported profit for the year ended March 31 of $817 million. Revenue rose 14% to $38.7 billion.

9. -- Twitter (TWTR) considered buying German music-streaming service SoundCloud but has backed out of the talks, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing a person familiar with the matter.

Twitter chose to let the deadline for exclusivity on talks pass without coming to an agreement because "the numbers didn't add up," the person told the newspaper.

Twitter shares rose 0.09% to $31.80.

10. -- Yahoo! (YHOO) is close to finalizing an acquisition of video-streaming startup RayV, the  Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

The acquisition of RayV would be one of several Web-video deals negotiated by Yahoo! in recent months.

The stock rose 0.9% in premarket trading to $34.18.

>> Read More: Don't Even Think About Selling Facebook

>> Read More: An Apple Acquisition That Could Squash Netflix

>>Read More: Hedge Funds Hate These 5 Stocks - Should You?

-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

To contact the writer of this article, click here:Joseph Woelfel

To submit a news tip, send an email

Follow @josephwoe58


Copyright 2014 Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

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