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Early movers: COST, HRB, MMM, GM, MSFT, MA & more

Check out which companies are making headlines before the bell:

Costco - The warehouse retailer reported fiscal first quarter profit of $0.96 per share, seven cents below estimates. Profits were hurt by lower gasoline prices and weaker foreign currencies.

H&R Block – The company reported a fiscal second quarter loss of 38 cents per share, one cent wider than anticipated, with revenue below consensus as well. The nation's largest tax preparer saw a drop in international tax preparation fees during the quarter.

Home Depot – The home improvement retailer holds its annual investor and analyst conference today, and will announce that it has reached its long term operating margin and return on invested capital targets, a year earlier than planned.

3M– Nomura upgraded 3M to "buy" from "neutral", pointing to accelerating organic growth and a possible rise in profit margins, among other factors.

Groupon – Wells Fargo upgraded Groupon to "outperform" from "market perform", saying Groupon is successfully expanding beyond its daily deals origins and is taking more market share in the local commerce market.

Joy Global – The mining equipment company earned $1.11 per share for its fourth quarter, excluding certain items, one cent below estimates, though revenue was slightly above consensus. Its fiscal 2014 guidance, however, falls below analyst forecasts as it deals with an oversupply of commodities and the need to cut costs.

Smith & Wesson – The gun maker earned 28 cents per share for its second quarter, beating estimates by seven cents, with revenue above consensus as well. The company saw increased sales and higher profit margins, although its profits were down 20 percent from a year earlier.

3D Systems – Jeffries began coverage on the 3D printer maker with a "buy" rating, saying 3D printing will revolutionize mass manufacturing.

MasterCard – The credit card issuer announced a 10-for-1 stock split as well as an 83 percent dividend increase and a $3.5 billion stock buyback program.

LabCorp – The medical lab operator cut its 2013 earnings guidance, and gave 2014 projections that fall below analyst estimates. It cited slower demand and an uncertain health care environment.

Microsoft – Microsoft got European Union approval for its $8.5 billion acquisition of Skype. Cisco Systems and others had filed complaints in Europe saying the deal would hamper competition, and then appealed the original ruling that approved the deal.

Scripps Network Interactive – The company may be the subject of a takeover bid by Discovery Communications, according to Variety. Scripps is the owner of cable channels Food Network and HGTV.

Urban Outfitters – Urban Outfitters said comparable store sales for the current quarter are up a "mid-single digit percentage". The teen apparel retailer had posted a decline in same-store sales for the third quarter, and had warned that increased discounting might be prevalent during the holiday season.

Nokia – Nokia will get a ruling from an India court tomorrow in a tax dispute that resulted in the seizure of a Nokia plant by the government.

General Motors – The largest U.S. automaker will cease car production in Australia by the end of 2017, saying there's no way to make the operation financially viable over the long term.

By CNBC's Peter Schacknow

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.