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Stock market news today, July 11, 2014: The Dow Jones today (Friday) will open just 85 points under 17,000 – a level it was able to achieve late last week, but has since slipped back under.
Yesterday, U.S. markets ended in red across the board on news that Portugal's Banco Espirito Santo had its top shareholder halt the sale of the bank's stocks and bonds. At its worst, the Dow Jones was down 180 points intraday, while the Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index (VIX), typically known as the Fear Index, jumped more than 5%.
Here's a roundup of the top stock market news stories for Friday:
- Up in the Sky: Reuters reports that e-commerce giant Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) announced plans to seek approval to test its drone delivery service Prime Air around the Seattle area, where the company has a technology center. With drones flying at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour, the new service aims to deliver goods within 30 minutes of their order, according to the company's CEO Jeff Bezos.
- The IPO of the Year: The Wall Street Journal reports that Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba could launch its vaunted IPO by the end of the month. The company is expected to raise more than $20 billion, ranking it as one of the largest public debuts to the market ever. Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO), which owns a $26 billion stake in Alibaba, was up marginally in premarket trading on the news.
- Today's Economic Calendar: Today's schedule features two speeches by members of the Federal Open Market Committee and the U.S. Treasury budget.
- Merger Mania: Shares of Lorillard Inc. (NYSE: LO) jumped more than 5% in premarket hours on news that Reynolds American Inc. (NYSE: RAI) is seeking a possible merger between both cigarette manufacturers. Many expected the deal to fail due to news that Reynolds' largest shareholder, British American Tobacco Inc. (NYSE: BTI) was planning to purchase the company's outstanding shares that it doesn't own. However, reports indicate that British American is actively engaged in the merger dialogue.
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