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More pain on Wall Street after worst close since 2014

IN THE NEWS TODAY

U.S. stock futures were lower this morning, after Wednesday's wild ride on Wall Street, which saw the Dow travel 1,000 points. Blue chips were off 565 around midday, before a dramatic afternoon turnaround ended up cutting those losses by more than half by the close. (CNBC)

January was already on track to be the worst month for the Dow and S&P 500 since February 2009, the last month of post-financial crisis losses before the market began its rebound. (CNBC)

The Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq remain solidly in correction territory ahead of today's open. The Dow closed Wednesday around its August lows. The S&P finished at its lowest level since April 2014, while the Nasdaq revisited its October 2014 lows. (CNBC)

The culprit was again plunging oil, with U.S. crude tanking nearly 7 percent Wednesday. Prices were still under pressure this morning, after industry numbers showed a greater-than-expected increase in stockpiles. The government reports inventories data at 11 a.m. ET. (CNBC)

Stocks in Europe were higher this morning, ahead of the European Central Bank's monthly monetary policy meeting. The policy statement is set for 7:45 a.m. ET, followed by a news conference with ECB President Mario Draghi at 8:30 a.m. ET. (CNBC)

Asian markets were lower overnight, following Wall Street's lead. Chinese stocks slid 3.2 percent, while Japanese stocks lost 2.4 percent, pushing both markets further into a bear market. Meanwhile, China's central bank is offering more than $60 billion of short-term to lenders. (CNBC)

In a broader move to reduce holdings of assets perceived to be risky, the average cash balances of investors climbed to 5.4 percent, the third-highest level since 2009, Bank of America Merrill Lynch's latest fund manager survey showed. (CNBC)

Russia's ruble this morning continued to plummet to new record lows against the dollar, tumbling by more than 3 percent on falling oil prices. (AFP)

The financial markets are "adjusting" to a series of headwinds, including low oil prices and China, Citigroup (C) chief Michael Corbat told CNBC in an interview from Davos.

Despite concerns about China, General Electric's (GE) vice chairman said at Davos the conglomerate remains committed there, following last week's deal to sell its appliances business to Qingdao-based Haier Group for $5.4 billion. (CNBC)

On CNBC's "Squawk Box" from Davos, special guests include Secretary of State John Kerry at 7:40 a.m. ET, and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew at 8 a.m. ET.

Taiwan-based Foxconn, best known as a top iPhone assembler, has offered $5.3 billion for troubled Japanese electronics maker Sharp. An investment fund backed by the Japanese government is pursuing Sharp. (WSJ)

Viacom (VIAB) cut by 85 percent compensation for ailing executive chairman Sumner Redstone, amid legal battles questioning his competence. CEO Philippe Dauman's pay declined about 30 percent. (AP)

Facebook Sports Stadium, a dedicated place to experience sports in real-time with friends, debuts at the NFL's conference championship games and then the Super Bowl. (AP)

Wal-Mart (WMT) is giving nearly all its U.S. hourly store employees, not just minimum-wage earners, a raise next month to stem worker turnover that's endemic in the retailing industry. (WSJ)

After more than 100 years of selling cars, General Motors (GM) is giving ride-sharing a spin with a new service targeting the growing market for mobility-on-demand. (CNBC)

Tens of millions of Americans in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast are bracing for a massive snowstorm this weekend. A blizzard watch is in effect for the Washington, D.C., which could see one to two feet of snow. (USA Today)

BY THE NUMBERS

Earnings continue to pour in, with Dow industrial components Verizon (VZ) and Travelers (TRV) as well as Dow transport stocks Southwest Airlines (LUV), Union Pacific (UNP), and United Continental (UAL) leading this morning's list. Dow industrial component American Express (AXP) and Starbucks (SBUX) are among the companies reporting quarterly results after the closing bell this afternoon.

Economic data also features prominently during today's session, with the Labor Department's weekly look at initial jobless claims and the Philadelphia Fed's January business-conditions index both out at 8:30 a.m. ET.


STOCKS TO WATCH

FireEye (FEYE) bought privately held intelligence agency iSight Partners for $200 million. The cyber security software maker also projected revenue slightly below Street estimates for its fourth quarter.

Pearson (PSO) is reducing its workforce by 20 percent. The British maker of education products has been pruning operations in recent months, including selling its stakes in The Economist and the Financial Times.

Barclays (BCS) is reportedly cutting hundreds of jobs in its investment banking business, as it shuts down that operating in a number of countries including Australia, Indonesia, and Russia.

Kinder Morgan (KMI) reported a fourth-quarter loss as the pipeline company continued to feel the impact of lower commodity prices. Kinder Morgan also cut its 2016 capital budget to $3.3 billion.

WATERCOOLER

Gawker Media is selling a minority stake to an outside investor for the first time, as it prepares to fight a lawsuit from Hulk Hogan. The wrestler is seeking $100 million for Gawker.com's publication of a 2012 sex tape. (Re/code)

Noting the record-breaking success of "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," which came out in December, Disney (DIS) is going to push back the release the next movie in the franchise to Dec. 15, 2017. (CNBC)