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After record streak, Dow pushes toward new gains ahead of Oscars weekend

IN THE NEWS TODAY

Even as the market rally shows signs of pausing, the Dow is in the midst of an impressive streak: it has posted record closes for 10 straight sessions, the longest stretch since it did so for 13 consecutive days back in 1987. (CNBC)

A gain Friday would give the Dow an 11-day win streak for the first time since January 1992. The S&P 500 is also on track for its fifth consecutive positive week. (CNBC)

Oil prices dipped after U.S. crude inventories rose for a seventh week, a signal that the market is still struggling to manage the glut despite efforts to cut production. (Reuters)

The United States exported a record amount of crude this week, putting out over a million barrels a day for the second week to fill the gap in global output created by OPEC's cutbacks. (CNBC)

Gold hit its highest level in about 3½ months on Friday, on a weaker dollar and as uncertainties surrounding U.S. President Donald Trump's policies and elections in Europe fueled safe haven demand. (Reuters)

Trump named China the "grand champions" of currency manipulation in a Reuters interview, just hours after his Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin touted a more analytical approach to China's currency practices.

In response to Trump's comments, China's Foreign Ministry said the country has no intention of using the devaluation of its currency as an advantage. (Reuters)

Senior Trump administration officials tried to moderate the White House's message on heightened efforts by the U.S. to enforce legal immigration at talks in Mexico City, but Mexican officials are driving a hard bargain. (WSJ)

Reince Priebus, Trump's chief of staff, requested that a top FBI official push back on media reports that Trump campaign aides were regularly in contact with Russian intelligence agents during the election, a White House official told AP.

The U.S. nuclear arsenal should be at the "top of the pack," Trump said in an interview with Reuters, contending that the United States has trailed rival nations in its weapons capacity.

The Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) will welcome Trump to the stage, despite traditional conservatives' wariness about the 45th president's agenda. (USA Today)

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) posted a ninth straight annual loss, on expenses relating to past charges of misconduct as well as restructuring. One of the U.K.'s "big four" banks, RBS had a net loss of $8.72 billion. (CNBC)

Alphabet's (GOOGL) Waymo self-driving car unit filed a suit against ride-hailing service Uber, accusing Uber of stealing its sensor technology. Uber responded by saying it took the allegations seriously and would review the matter carefully. (CNBC)

Executives at Kohl's are taking the retailer in a new, smaller direction — after 19 store closings in 2016, the company's leaders are exploring moving some of its massive department stores into smaller shops. (CNBC)

Two senior Samsung executives offered to resign and take responsibility for the device maker's involvement in the grand theft scandal that also tied in South Korea's president. The Korean news agency that reported the story did not cite sources. (Reuters)

Airbus and Boeing suppliers are under pressure as steepening demand strains production of airplane parts including seats, toilets and engine components. (WSJ)

BY THE NUMBERS

Two reports will conclude the week's economic data, with both coming at 10 a.m. ET. The government's January new home sales report is expected to show a 5.8 percent increase to an annual rate of 570,000 units, partially reversing a December decline of 10.4 percent.

And the final February University of Michigan consumer sentiment index is expected to come in at 95.7, slightly lower than the last reading of 96.0.

Earnings reports out this morning include the latest numbers from retailers Foot Locker (FL) and J.C. Penney (JCP). There are no earnings reports due after today's closing bell.

STOCKS TO WATCH

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) is among our stocks to watch today, with the corporate hardware and software maker reporting adjusted quarterly profit of 45 cents per share, 1 cent above estimates. However, revenue fell short of forecasts, and the company also cut its full-year profit forecast due to a stronger dollar and execution issues, among other factors.

J.C. Penney (JCP) announced it would close up to 140 stores over the next few months on the back of a fiscal fourth-quarter earnings report that beat the Street's expectations, though revenue and same-store sales fell shy. Earnings came in at 64 cents per share versus the estimated 61 cents.

Nordstrom (JWN) beat estimates by 22 cents with quarterly profit of $1.37 per share, with the retailer's revenue essentially in line. Nordstrom did give a weaker-than-expected full-year earnings outlook and a prediction of flat comparable store sales.

Gap (GPS) reported in-line earnings, with adjusted quarterly profit of 51 cents per share, and revenue slightly above estimates. The retailer also said its efforts to turn around will bear fruit, with comparable store sales likely to be up this year for the first time in three years. However, the company did give full-year earnings guidance that falls somewhat short of Street forecasts.

CBOE Holdings (CBOE) will be joining the S&P 500 next week, swapping places with Pitney Bowes (PBI), which will move to the S&P MidCap 400.

Pearson (PSO) announced plans to further cut expenses and sell more assets. However, the education services provider's shares are getting a boost on indications that balance sheet deterioration of the past few years has bottomed out.

Baidu (BIDU) posted a revenue decline for a second straight quarter, but the China-based search engine company forecast a rebound this year as it expands its revenue base outside its core search business.

Intuit (INTU) issued a better-than-expected revenue outlook for the current quarter, after reporting a slower-than-usual start to the tax season earlier this year. Intuit is the maker of the best-selling TurboTax software.

Herbalife (HLF) issued a weaker-than-expected current quarter and full-year outlook, with currency-related headwinds among the key factors weighing on the nutritional products maker's results.

Capital One (COF) revealed that its anti-money laundering practices are being investigated by federal regulators. That news came in an SEC filing, although it had mentioned receiving subpoenas and requests for testimony in a filing in November.

WATERCOOLER

A decade-old "doomsday" seed vault is seeing a wave of new samples fill its repository, which was built as a safeguard against global crises that could wipe out crops. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, located on an Arctic Island, has welcomed some 50,000 new samples. (AP)

Oscars weekend is here, and Los Angeles is gearing for the glitzy Academy Awards ceremony, hosted this year by TV personality Jimmy Kimmel. Up for best picture are "Moonlight," "Hidden Figures" and "La La Land," among others. (USA Today)