10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Here is what you need to know.

  1. Here comes the Fed. Markets are pricing in a 62.4% chance that the central bank raises its fed funds rate by 25 basis points to a range between 2.25% and 2.50%, according to Bloomberg data.
  2. A missing regional manufacturing report in China is raising concerns that the economy is weaker than the government will acknowledge. A purchasing managers’ index report from Guangdong, a Chinese province just north of Hong Kong, has stopped being produced as the central government deemed it “illegal” after months of trending lower.
  3. Facebook acknowledges allowing Netflix and Spotify access to your private messages. “Did partners get access to messages? Yes,” the social-media giant said in a blog post Tuesday. “But people had to explicitly sign in to Facebook first to use a partner’s messaging feature.”
  4. GE Healthcare files a confidential IPO. A public filing is likely to happen in the spring, and the new company could have an enterprise value of $US65 billion to $US70 billion, according to Bloomberg.
  5. Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline sign a megadeal that could change the face of healthcare. The British pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline will merge its consumer-health business with Pfizer to create a joint venture that will have almost $US10 billion of sales, giving it a market share the two say will far exceed that of rivals such as Johnson & Johnson, Sanofi, and Bayer.
  6. FedEx says it sees a slowdown in global trade. The logistics giant slashed its 2019 outlook, saying it has seen a noticeable slowdown in Europe and Asia.
  7. Blue Apron falls below $US1 for the first time.Shares of the meal-kit maker touched a low of $US0.88 on Tuesday before settling at $US0.90. They are now down 91% since their June 2017 initial public offering.
  8. Stock markets around the world are mostly lower. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng (-1.05%) led the losses in Asia, and Britain’s FTSE (-1.06%) trails in Europe. The S&P 500 is set to open up 0.37% near 2,556.
  9. Earnings reports trickle out. General Mills and Paychex report ahead of the opening bell.
  10. US economic data is light. Existing-home sales will be released at 10 a.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is down 1 basis point at 2.81%.

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