November 19 Premarket Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Here are 10 things you should know for Wednesday, Nov. 19:

1. -- U.S. stock futures were mixed Wednesday ahead of minutes from the the latest Federal Open Market Committee meeting.

European stocks traded mixed while Asian equities finished the session lower. Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.3%. 

2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. on Wednesday includes housing starts and building permits for October at 8:30 a.m. EST, and the release at 2 p.m. of minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee's Oct. 29 meeting.

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3. -- U.S. stocks on Tuesday finished higher and the S&P 500 closed the trading day at an all-time high for a fifth-consecutive session.

The S&P 500 rose 0.51% to close at 2,051.80, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.2% to 17,687.82, an all-time high, and the Nasdaq gained 0.7% to 4,702.44.

4. -- The controversial Keystone XL pipeline was handed a defeat on Tuesday as the controversial project was rejected in the U.S. Senate by the narrowest of margins. As a result, President Obama's previously anticipated veto won't come into play.

The Senate voted 59 to 41 to reject the measure. Throughout the day it was not clear heading into the vote whether supporters would be able to muster the minimum 60 votes needed to avoid a filibuster. However, in the end, Democrats previously viewed as potential swing votes voted with their party.

5. -- Target (TGT) is expected on Wednesday to post third-quarter earnings of 47 cents a share on sales of $17.56 billion.

6. -- Lowe's (LOW)  reported third-quarter earnings of $585 million, or 59 cents a share, topping the forecasts of analysts.

Sales rose 5.6% to $13.68 billion in the period, also topping Wall Street estimates.

The home-improvement retailer said it expects full-year earnings of $2.68 a share.

Rival Home Depot (HD) reported on Tuesday that third-quarter profit rose 14% and U.S. comparable-store sales jumped 5.8% in the period.

7. -- Dollar General (DG) may have to divest more than double the 1,500 stores it said it was willing to sell if it wants to gain regulatory approval to buy rival Family Dollar (FDO) , The New York Post reported.

The Federal Trade Commission may require the country's No. 1 dollar store chain to divest more than 4,000 stores to win approval of its stalled $9.1 billion merger proposal, two sources close to the situation told the Post.

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8. -- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is demanding the auto industry recall millions of additional cars equipped with faulty air bags.

The action on Tuesday by the agency covers driver's side air bags equipped with inflators made by Takata of Japan. The inflators can erupt and send metal fragments into the passenger compartment.

At least five deaths worldwide have been linked to the problem.

Previously, cars with the inflators had been recalled only in regions with high humidity such as Gulf Coast states, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Up until now, about 8 million cars in the U.S. with Takata inflators have been recalled for problems with either the driver or passenger side air bag, or both. Another 4 million have been recalled outside the U.S., according to The Associated Press.

Safety regulators said Tuesday's action is based on incidents involving a death in California and an injury in North Carolina where the air bags were implicated. Both states are outside of the area covered by the earlier recalls.

9. -- Staples (SPLS)  posted adjusted third-quarter earnings of 37 cents a share, meeting estimates, but said sales fell 2.5% to $5.96 billion as the office-products retailer closed underperforming stores.

10. -- Buyout firms KKR & Co. (KKR) and Clayton, Dubilier & Rice have teamed up to take PetSmart  (PETM)  private for more than $7.5 billion, people familiar with the matter told Reuters, as the auction for the pet food retailer heats up.

KKR and CD&R are planning to submit a joint bid for PetSmart next month, the people said. Apollo Global Management (APO) and BC Partners are also separately considering offers, the people told Reuters.

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-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

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

Follow @JoeWTheStreet

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