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Stock futures higher despite Bank of England decision

IN THE NEWS TODAY

U.S. stock futures briefly pared gains this morning following the Bank of England's unexpected decision to leave interest rates unchanged in its first post-Brexit vote. They bounced back as investors took stock of expectations for an August rate cut. (CNBC)

Key Brexit campaigner Boris Johnson, formerly mayor of London, has been appointed foreign secretary of the U.K. by new Prime Minister Theresa May. Philip Hammond has become the new Finance Minister. Amber Rudd has replaced May as the home secretary. (CNBC)

Oil prices were higher this morning, recouping some of Wednesday's nearly 4.4 percent slide. But gains were likely to be limited by mounting concerns over a continued global glut, following three bearish reports about U.S. crude inventories. (Reuters)

The latest earnings season starts to kick into high-gear this morning, with Dow stock JPMorgan (JPM) reporting better than expected profit and revenue. Meanwhile, investment giant BlackRock (BLK) matched estimates on earnings and revenue. (CNBC)

European Union antitrust regulators this morning accused Alphabet's (GOOGL) Google of preventing rivals from competing in the lucrative online search advertising market, bringing their third charge against the U.S. tech giant. (CNBC)

Viacom is said to be in talks to sell a 49 percent stake in its film studio, Paramount Pictures, to China's Dalian Wanda Group. Earlier this year, Viacom announced its plans to sell a significant minority stake. (WSJ)

Messaging app Line makes its debut on the NYSE today, after pricing its IPO at the top end of the expected range. Headquartered in Japan and owned by South Korea's Naver Corporation, Line also is going public on the Tokyo Stock Exchange tomorrow. (USA Today)

Unity Technologies, whose software was used in the creation of a large number of the world's top mobile games, including the current hit Pokémon Go, raised $181 million in a funding round that values the company at $1.5 billion. (NY Times)

DECISION 2016

Ahead of next week's convention, Donald Trump said he's going to announce his choice for running mate tomorrow morning, confirming NBC News reports earlier in the week. The presumptive GOP presidential nominee is believed to be down to three VP possibilities.

Zero percent of African-American voters support Trump in Ohio and Pennsylvania. That's according to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist polls. Among white voters, Trump beats Democrat Hillary Clinton in Ohio, while they're tied in Pennsylvania.

Overall, Clinton leads Trump in the battleground states of Iowa and Pennsylvania. But in Ohio, the two candidates are tied. The polls were conducted in the immediate aftermath of the FBI recommending no charges against Clinton in her private email flap.

Billionaire venture capitalist Peter Thiel is set to speak at the Republican convention on the final night — the same night as former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow and Trump. All four of Trump's adult children speak during the week. (NY Times)

BY THE NUMBERS

Two key economic reports come at 8:30 a.m. ET, with the Labor Department issuing both weekly initial jobless claims and the June producer price index. The PPI, a measure of wholesale inflation, could be an important report for Fed watchers.

Central bankers could hike interest rates as many as two times before the end of the year, Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said in a speech last night — downgrading his tightening expectations even though he feels the economy is on "fairly firm footing."

Three more Fed officials give speeches today, including Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart who speaks at 11:15 a.m. ET; Kansas City Fed President Esther George at around 1:15 p.m. ET; and Dallas Fed President Rob Kaplan at 7 p.m. ET.


STOCKS TO WATCH

Yum Brands (YUM) slightly beat estimates with earnings, while revenue missed. China same store sales were flat, but the performance did represent a rebound. The parent of KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell raised its profit growth outlook.

J.M. Smucker (SJM) raised its quarterly dividend by 12 percent, to 75 cents per share from the prior 67 cents. The dividend is payable on September 1 to shareholders of record on Aug. 12.

Volkswagen (VLKAY) saw its proposed recall plan for certain diesel vehicles rejected by California regulators, who said it was incomplete and deficient in a number of areas. However, the state said it would work with VW to reach a resolution.

Cypress Semiconductor (CY) is working with Goldman Sachs on strategic options, according to a Betaville report, with three private equity firms said to be interested in the chipmaker.

Cabela's (CAB) is near a sale to Goldman Sachs (GS) and Bass Pro Shops, according to the New York Post. Other private equity suitors, including Apax Partners and TPG Capital, have reportedly dropped out.

WATERCOOLER

The first round of the British Open Championship teed off this morning at Royal Troon in Scotland, one of the oldest golf clubs in the world. Follow the latest on NBC Sports' live blog, and on the Golf Channel and NBC throughout the weekend.