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In addition, Facebook reported earnings that topped expectations.
Companies posting first-quarter earnings before Wall Street opens on Thursday included Dow-listed Caterpillar, 3M and Verizon Communications.
Caterpillar surprised with stronger-than-expected earnings and raised its full-year outlook on a better-than-expected rebound in sales to the construction industry. 3M and United Parcel Service both missed analysts' estimates, however, with UPS citing the harsh winter weather.
Other companies reporting early on Thursday are Eli Lilly, General Motors, American Airlines, Delphi Automotive, Raytheon, Time Warner Cable and United Continental. Eli Lilly's results will also be of particular interest after the news earlier this week that it is buying Novartis' animal health division for $5.4 billion.
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Starbucks, Visa and Baidu will report after the end of trade on Thursday.
Outside of the corporate space, there will be weekly initial jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. ET. There will also be durable goods data for March.