10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Here is what you need to know.

JPMorgan beats earnings expectations after accounting for $US2.4 billion hit from tax reform. The firm is the first of the big banks to report in what is expected to be an unconventional earnings cycle for the industry, mostly on account of the late-arriving tax law that has caused many banks to book losses on deferred tax assets that declined in value.

There’s a strategy that may help you crush earnings season. It involves the purchase of options straddles that are cheap relative to history and that capture a company’s earnings period, and it has provided outsize returns for the past two decades.

An infamous mystery trader refuses to give up on a bet that the stock market will go nuts. A trader just rolled over a massive volatility bet that could pay out $US262.5 million if all goes according to plan.

$US10 billion Dropbox has filed the paperwork to go public. The company, which grabbed a $US10 billion valuation during a 2014 funding round, plans to list shares in the first half of the year, the report says.

Nomura says there’s a 1 in 4 chance of a 2nd EU referendum and it would send the pound surging. Talk of a second referendum – long favoured by Remain backers – has come to the fore in recent days after Nigel Farage, one of the architects of Brexit, said he believed there had come to be an argument to say one should be held.

The CEO of a cryptocurrency platform offering 100x leverage explains why he turns down investor cash. “When we need the VCs the most they didn’t want to be associated with bitcoin or cryptocurrencies,” he told Business Insider.

A Wall Street consultancy eviscerated crypto in a massive report – and it should strike fear into the heart of every bitcoin bull. Quinlan & Associates put out a report Thursday titled “Fool’s Gold: Unearthing The World of Cryptocurrency” in which it outlined a case for bitcoin dropping to $US1,800 by December.

Stock markets around the world trade mixed. China’s Shanghai Composite (+0.10%) eked out a gain, while Germany’s DAX (+0.07%) did as well. The S&P 500 is set to open up 0.18% near 2,774.50.

Earnings reports start in earnest. JPMorgan already released quarterly earnings (see above), while BlackRock, Wells Fargo, and PNC are also scheduled to report before the market open.

US economic data is light. CPI and retail sales will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is down 2 basis points at 2.53%.

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