Good morning. Here’s what you need to know:
- Asian markets were up over night with the Nikkei up 0.26%. Major European indices are down and US futures indicate a negative open. Now, here are the 10 unusual stocks attracting huge attention this morning >
- CPI figures came in pretty tame. Here are 5 charts you must see before today’s report >
- Initial jobless claims came bang-on with expectations.
- Fitch Ratings is expected to downgrade US states after it released a report announcing that it was changing the way it analyses pension bills and the pressure it puts on state budgets. Click here to see the next 10 pension funds that will go bust >
- BNP Paribas’ 4Q net profit was up 14% to €1.55 billion ($2.1 billion) but profits came in lower than expected after the French bank had to write-down its insurer AXA SA.
- Nestlé SA’s net profits tripled from last year to $35.65 billion and was pushed by its eye-care business in emerging markets.
- ECB’s bank lending soared Wednesday to its highest level in 19 months. Banks borrowed €15.801 billion ($21.44 billion) from its emergency marginal-lending facility. Here’s a guide to the fundamental problem facing Europe >
- With Portuguese yields at an all time high Germany is pressurizing the country to accept a bailout now.
- Steve Jobs was seen leaving the Stanford Cancer centre in Paolo Alto.Apple shares are sliding in the pre-market.
- The situation in Bahrain deteriorates as protests continue and three are reported dead. An ABC journalist was brutally beaten during a protest. 14 are reported dead in Libya after protestors continue to mount pressure on Muammar el-Qaddafi to step-down. Click here for to see why the Mideast is doomed to crisis after crisis >
- BONUS – Britney Spears reportedly shelled out $20 million for a luxury mansion in Hidden Hills community in LA.