10 things you need to know before the opening bell

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BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

Here’s what you need to know before the markets open.

1. Barclays CEO Jes Staley is being investigated by UK regulators over his ties to Jeffrey Epstein – ‘I wonder if he can survive this.‘ The bank’s board said Staley has been “sufficiently transparent with the company.”

2. ‘Why are you not Elon Musk?’: The new boss of an oil-and-gas titan isn’t leaving clean energy to Tesla. “I struggle enough with who I am,” BP CEO Bernard Looney replied.

3. Tesla is recalling 15,000 Model Xs because of a power-steering issue. Elon Musk’s electric-car maker made the call after noticing “excessive corrosion” on bolts in the vehicle model.

4. Alibaba beats quarterly revenue estimates. The Chinese online-shopping titan’s revenue rose 38% as its core e-commerce and cloud-computing businesses grew steadily.

5. Credit Suisse posts best profit since 2010 in Thiam swan song. The Swiss bank posted a 69% rise in annual net profit, days after CEO Tidjane Thiam quit over a spying scandal.

6. Nissan slashes full-year profit forecast, hit by sales slump. The Japanese automaker, still reeling from the scandal surrounding former boss Carlos Ghosn, cut its operating-profit forecast for this year by 43% after vehicle sales dropped.

7. Nestle expects growth this year after solid 2019. The Swiss food giant made the prediction after organic sales growth hit a four-year high of 3.5% and profitability improved in 2019.

8. Stocks tumble after Wuhan coronavirus cases and deaths surge to a new daily high. European equities slumped with Germany’s DAX down 1%, Britain’s FTSE 100 down 1.6%, and the Euro Stoxx 50 down 1.2%. Asian indexes closed lower with China’s Shanghai Composite down 0.7%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng down 0.3%, and Japan’s Nikkei down 0.1%. US stocks are set to fall with futures underlying the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 down 0.8%, and Nasdaq futures down 0.9%.

9. Some big earnings are due. Highlights include PepsiCo and Nvidia.

10. Key data is coming out. Figures for inflation and jobless claims are worth watching.