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Early movers: McDonald's, Costco, L Brands & more

Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell on Thursday:

McDonald's - The fast-food chain reported July same-store sales that climbed 0.7 percent, edging past expectations for a gain of 0.3 percent, as stronger-than-expected sales in the U.S. helped offset weakness in Europe.

Costco Wholesale - The wholesale retailer posted July same-store sales that rose 4 percent, but still missed expectations, hurt by a stronger dollar.

L Brands - The parent company of Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works posted same-store sales that rose 3 percent in July and lifted its second quarter earnings guidance to 60 cents a share from 50 cents to 55 cents a share.

Beam - The premium-branded distilled spirits producer posted earnings of 64 cents a share, excluding one-time items, on sales of $638 million, beating expectations for 60 cents a share on sales of $629 million.

Cisco Systems - UBS raised its target price on the networking equipment maker to $28.50 from $26.

Microsoft - Evercore lifted its rating on the tech giant to "overweight" from "equal-weight" and boosted its price target to $38 from $35.

Target - JPMorgan downgraded the retailer to "neutral" from "overweight," with a price target of $74, citing reduced visibility and valuation.

Lowe's - JPMorgan upgraded the home improvement retailer to "overweight" from "neutral," with a price target of $52, thanks to improved execution and more consistent financial results from the company.

Toyota Motor - The Japanese automaker is recalling 342,000 Tacoma pickup trucks built from 2004 to 2011 to fix defective seat belts, saying a screw could come loose in the front seat belts on some of those models, causing the belts to malfunction.

—By CNBC's JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC)

Questions? Comments? Email us at marketinsider@cnbc.com

  • Patti Domm

    Patti Domm is CNBC Executive Editor, News, responsible for news coverage of the markets and economy.

  • A CNBC reporter since 1990, Bob Pisani covers Wall Street from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

  • CNBC Personal Finance Correspondent

  • JeeYeon Park is a writer for CNBC.com. Follow her on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC

  • Rick Santelli joined CNBC Business News as an on-air editor in 1999, reporting live from the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade.

  • Senior Producer at CNBC's Breaking News Desk.