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Mastermind of Paris attacks confirmed dead

TERROR IN PARIS

The Belgian-born mastermind of the Paris attacks was killed in Wednesday's police raid, which also resulted in a woman blowing herself up and the arrests of eight suspects. (CNBC)

The prime minister of France has warned of a risk of chemical warfare in the wake of the Paris attacks. Meanwhile, the U.S. embassy in Italy said tourist sites in Rome and Milan could be targets for potential terrorist attacks. (CNBC)

A new propaganda video, purportedly from ISIS, threatened attacks on New York City. The authenticity has not been verified, but officials said there are not any specific threats against the city. (USA Today)

Honduran authorities said they had intercepted six Syrian nationals traveling on doctored Greek passports in the past week, including five who had been trying to reach the United States. (Reuters)

Congressional Republicans are increasing pressure on the White House to halt a program to allow Syrian refugees to resettle in the United States. A vote is expected on a bill to tighten screening procedures. (NY Times)

IN BUSINESS NEWS

U.S. stock futures were building on Wednesday's strong Fed minutes-inspired rally that erased November's losses. The S&P 500 joined the Nasdaq in the green for the year, while the Dow remained just 86 points shy of breakeven for 2015. (CNBC)

The minutes from the Fed's October meeting reinforced the message that interest rates could go up next month, signaling the economy was strong enough to handle a move. But policymakers did leave themselves some wiggle room for delay. (CNBC)

Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester joins CNBC's "Squawk Box" at 8:30 a.m. ET. Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart speaks Georgia at 12:30 p.m. ET, and Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer speaks at 4:45 p.m. ET in San Francisco

Dow stock UnitedHealth (UNH) cut its full-year profit forecast due to continued pressure on its Obamacare plans for individuals, saying it's evaluating to what extent it can continue to offer these plans in 2017. (Reuters)

Mobile payments firm Square (SQ), run by Jack Dorsey who's also Twitter's CEO, begins trading today, after pricing its IPO at $9 per share. That was below the expected range, and lower than the most recent round of private financing. (CNBC)

Match (MTCH) begins trading today, after the dating website operator's IPO priced at $12 per share, at the low end of the expected range. Match is the operator of Tinder, Match.com, and OkCupid. (Reuters)

In an SEC filing, Match distanced itself from interview comments made by Tinder CEO Sean Rad, who talked about at what age he lost his virginity and how many women he's slept with. (Re/code)

Yahoo (YHOO) is being pressured by activist investor Starboard Value to halt its planned spinoff of its Alibaba (BABA) stake. Yahoo is being urged instead to sell its Internet business. (WSJ)

Pfizer (PFE) is accelerating talks to buy Allergan (AGN), in a $150 billion deal to redomicile the U.S. drug giant in Ireland, as the U.S. Treasury prepared to clamp down further on such tax inversion mergers. (Reuters)

A tentative four-year labor deal between Ford (F) and the UAW appears set to be rejected. Meanwhile, the union may ratify as soon as tomorrow its contract with General Motors (GM). (Reuters & Detroit Free Press)

Volkswagen is expected tomorrow to announce substantial spending cuts due to emissions-cheating the fallout. Meanwhile, VW also faces a key Friday deadline with U.S. regulators concerning the scandal. (NYT)

BY THE NUMBERS

In addition to today's Fed speakers, investors get a few economic reports to consider: Weekly filings for first-time jobless claims at 8:30 a.m. ET; this month's Philadelphia Fed index at 10 a.m. ET; and the index of leading economic indicators for November at 10 a.m. ET.

Best Buy (BBY) and J.M. Smucker (SJM) lead this morning's list of corporate earnings, with Autodesk (ADSK), Gap (GPS), Intuit (INTU), Ross Stores (ROST), Williams-Sonoma (WSM), and Workday (WDAY) set to release numbers after the closing bell.


STOCKS TO WATCH

Keurig Green Mountain (GMCR) surged nearly 20 percent in premarket trading, after earnings exceeded estimates by a wide margin. Revenue also beat. Sales did slow, but not as much as many analysts had expected.

Salesforce.com (CRM) beat estimates on earnings and revenue. The cloud computing services and software provider also gave an upbeat outlook for this year and next year.

L Brands (LB) beat on earnings and matched on revenues. The parent of Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works raised full-year guidance, but the current quarter outlook was below forecasts.

Raytheon (RTN) increased its share buyback program by $2 billion. The defense contractor will buy back shares "from time to time" at the company's discretion depending on market conditions.

In a show of confidence, Elon Musk's SolarCity is expected to announce today that it's raised $113 million in a new investment led by the clean-energy arm of Silver Lake.

SunEdison (SUNE) is under pressure on reports that Blackstone (BX) has no plans to invest in the solar company, contrary to earlier reports that it was considering such an investment.

WATERCOOLER

Progress on pay equality between the sexes is stalling, according to the World Economic Forum, and it could take another 118-years to eliminate the gender gap on wages. (CNBC)