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Nervous Markets Poised For Tepid Rebound -- U.S. Commentary

U.S. stocks are set to open higher Thursday, although markets remain skittish after Monday's bloodbath on Wall Street. The major averages in U.S. were unable to sustain early gains yesterday, and futures have been showing a lack of direction already this morning.

The DJIA is up 100 points, a fraction of this week's steep losses.

Investors are concerned that rising U.S. inflation could mean the end to the era of "easy money" for the world's largest economy.

The recent correction in U.S. stocks is unlikely to negatively impact the broader U.S. economy, Dallas Federal Reserve President Robert Kaplan said early Thursday at an event in Germany.

Elsewhere, the Bank of England decided to stand pat on rates this morning, but hinted at somewhat earlier- and deeper-than-expected rate hikes.

The central bank raised its near-term growth projections, citing strengthening global growth, and forecast inflation to remain above 2 percent target over the forecast horizon.

Markets are turning attention to corporate news. Twitter Inc. (TWTR) reported revenue and adjusted earnings per share for the fourth quarter beat analysts' estimates. The company's shares are rising more than 17 percent in pre-market activity.

T-Mobile US Inc. (TMUS) revealed earnings for its fourth quarter that climbed compared to the same period last year. The bottom line rose to $2.71 billion, or $3.11 per share, up from $390 million, or $0.45 per share, in last year's fourth quarter. Revenue for the quarter rose 5.2 percent.

Yum! Brands (YUM) announced a new partnership with online and mobile takeout food-ordering company Grubhub Inc. (GRUB) to drive incremental sales to KFC and Taco Bell restaurants in the U.S. Grubhub shares are set open sharply higher.

Sanofi SA announced that it commenced a tender offer on Wednesday to acquire all of the outstanding shares of common stock of Bioverativ, Inc. for $105 per share in cash, without interest thereon and net of any required tax withholding.

Asian stocks closed mostly higher on Thursday. Chinese shares fell for a third day. China's Shanghai Composite index tumbled 47.21 points or 1.43 percent to 3,262.05 while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index closed up 128.07 points or 0.42 percent at 30,451.27.

Japanese shares rose sharply. The Nikkei average rallied 245.49 points or 1.13 percent to finish at 21,890.86 while the broader Topix index closed 0.90 percent higher at 1,765.69.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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