10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Here is what you need to know.

The Fed is worried it won’t achieve one of its key objectives for a while. Minutes from the September FOMC meeting released on Wednesday show many members of the committee believe inflation will remain below the Fed’s 2% target for longer.

Rate hike odds were unfazed. The market sees a 76.7% chance the Fed hikes again before the end of the year, according to Bloomberg World Interest Rate Probability data.

Earnings season kicks off. Citigroup and JPMorgan report ahead of the opening bell.

Goldman Sachs has a simple plan to make a killing during earnings season. The bank combed through 25,000 earnings reports since 1996 and found that buying straddles (buying both a put and a call) that costs less than the implied earnings-related stock move netted an average profit of 24%, with a success rate of 56%.

Bitcoin passes $US5,000. The cryptocurrency hit an all-time high of $US5,136 a coin in early action on Thursday.

The Justice Department will likely try to block a Sprint-T-Mobile deal. A merger between the two mobile carriers would create a company that controls more than half of the market for pre-paid plans, favoured by people with little or poor credit, Reuters says.

Tech giants are blaming Chinese regulations for breaching intellectual-property rights. US industry groups representing Apple, IBM and others say China’s rules on inbound investment infrige on their intellectual property rights, South China Morning post says.

Banks are making preparations for Brexit. Bank of America Merrill Lynch has rented a huge office space in Paris, Bloomberg reports, and Citigroup said it plans to open a European private banking hub in Luxembourg.

Stock markets around the world are higher. Japan’s Nikkei (+0.35%) led the gains in Asia and Britain’s FTSE (+0.12%) edges up in Europe. The S&P 500 is set to open little changed near 2,553.

US economic data flows. PPI and initial claims will both be released at 8:30 a.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is down 1 basis point at 2.34%.

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