10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Here is what you need to know.

The Fed holds, says the economy is growing at a ‘strong’ pace. The US central bank left its key rate in a range between 1.75% and 2% and said economy activity was “rising at a strong rate.”

Chinese stocks got smoked. China’s Shanghai Composite slid 2% on Thursday amid US trade tensions and as regulators were ready to impose even tougher restrictions on property purchases. Elsewhere, Germany’s DAX (-1.78%) leads the losses in Europe, while the S&P 500 is set to open lower by 0.64%.

The Bank of England hikes rates. Britain’s central bank raised its key interest rate for just the second time since the financial crisis, lifting it from 0.5% to 0.75%.

The stock market is seeing abnormally large moves this earnings season. Goldman Sachs says single-stock moves have been more extreme this earnings season than at any other point in the past eight quarters, and the bank has four recommendations for how you can make some money before the reporting is over.

Tesla reports wider loss than expected, expects to be profitable in the 2nd half. The electric-car maker reported mixed second-quarter results and said it planned to make 50,000 to 55,000 Model 3 sedans in its third quarter – on its way to profitability in the second half of the year.

Elon Musk apologizes to the analyst whose questions he called ‘boring’ and ‘boneheaded.’ “I’d like to apologise for being impolite on the prior call,” the Tesla CEO said on Wednesday’s second-quarter conference call. “Honestly, I really think there’s no excuse for bad manners, and I was kind of violating my own rule in that regard. There are reasons for it in that I had gotten no sleep, had been working 110-hour, 120-hour weeks, but nonetheless, there’s still no excuse.”

Carl Icahn is getting involved in Cigna’s $US67 billion merger with Express Scripts. Icahn has amassed a stake of less than 5% in Cigna with the intent of voting against its deal with Express Scripts, The Wall Street Journal says.

Wall Street bankers are adding a so-called Weinstein clause to deals. The clause would in some cases require a selling company to compensate a buyer if sexual-misconduct scandals by executives come to light.

Earnings reports keep coming. DowDuPont and Kellogg report ahead of the opening bell, while Activision Blizzard, CBS, GoPro, and Take-Two Interactive release their quarterly results after markets close.

US economic data remains heavy. Initial claims will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET before durable goods and factory orders cross the wires at 10 a.m. ET.

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