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Markets are poised for a slow start, as traders await this morning's speech from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen. In company news, here are some names to watch.
- Dynegy Inc. (NYSE:DYN) is positioned more than 17% higher ahead of the bell, after the company said it will scoop up roughly $6.3 billion worth of coal and gas assets from Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK) and Energy Capital Partners. The acquisition -- which is expected to triple DYN's 2015 adjusted earnings -- will boost the energy firm's generating capacity in various parts of the Northeast, including Pennsylvania and New Jersey. (FOX Business)
- Sprint Corporation (NYSE:S) and T-Mobile US Inc (NYSE:TMUS) continue to try and one-up each other on the pricing-plan front. The former announced an unlimited data plan for $60 a month -- in the wake of a change to its family plan unveiled earlier this week -- undercutting a similar plan from the latter by $20. TMUS is striking back, though, by offering existing subscribers free upgrades to unlimited data plans if they refer friends. (CNN Money)
- El Pollo Loco Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:LOCO) is expanding its presence in the Southwest. The quick-service restaurant has signed a 20-franchise agreement with AA Pollo Inc. to build new restaurants in Houston and San Antonio. LOCO is also hoping an additional expansion into areas such as California and Nevada will help it achieve its 8-10% growth target. (MarketWatch)
- A federal judge ruled against Allergan, Inc. (NYSE:AGN) on Thursday, saying the court would not accelerate the company's insider-trading lawsuit against Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NSYE:VRX) and Pershing Square Capital Management -- AGN's largest shareholder. Additionally, the judge did not delay a special shareholder meeting with VRX, which, with Pershing, is attempting a hostile takeover of AGN. (The New York Times)
- Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) is unable to sell its clients investments in both hedge and private-equity funds, due to restrictions stemming from its settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). C is in the process of resolving the issue with the SEC, and in the meantime, is still able to sell investments to large institutions. (Reuters, via CNBC)
- A number of retailers reported earnings, including Aeropostale Inc (NYSE:ARO), Ann Inc (NYSE:ANN), Foot Locker, Inc. (NYSE:FL), GameStop Corp. (NYSE:GME), and The Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS). (AP, via CNBC; Bloomberg Businessweek; MarketWatch; FOX Business)