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Pre-Market: Twitter Apes Facebook Design; Republicans Cave on Debt Celing


Some Twitter users are seeing a news feed-like redesign of Twitter, which investors like.

After day four of the biggest rally of the year, stock index futures were relatively flat before the opening bell. Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG) could fall today after the company cut its growth forecasts.

Before the opening bell, Dow (INDEXDJX:.DJI) futures were down 0.05% to 15,921. S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) futures fell 0.05% to 1,812.70 and futures on the Nasdaq Composite (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) rose 0.03% to 3,614.00. No major economic indicators are due to come out today.

Yesterday, stocks staged a huge rally after Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen made optimistic comments about the state of the economy in her testimony in Congress. Also, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted yesterday to raise the debt limit without wrangling concessions from the Democrats on other issues, avoiding a repeat of October 2013's government shutdown.

Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) shares rose 1.4% after the company said that it is working on a major redesign of the profile page that mimics the look and feel of Facebook's (NASDAQ:FB) news feed. Some users, including a reporter at Mashable, are finding that their profile pages now give much more prominence to the header image and put more emphasis on photos. This is a major departure from Twitter's signature timeline.

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) shares fell 1.9% after UBS (NYSE:UBS) analysts lowered their rating on the stock to Neutral from Buy. The analysts pointed to Amazon's slowing growth in the fourth quarter as a reason for their downgrade.

Procter & Gamble shares fell 0.8% after the world's largest consumer goods company cut its sales and profit forecast. The company said that per-share earnings will grow just 3% to 5% this year due to currency fluctuations, political troubles in Egypt, and price controls in Venezuela. Previously, the company projected growth of 5% to 7%.

After the bell today, Cisco Systems, Inc (NASDAQ:CSCO) is expected to report earnings per share of $0.37 on $11.03 billion in sales, down from $0.59 per share and $12.10 billion a year ago.

In overseas news, Chinese exports jumped 10.6% year-over-year in January. The spike surprised economists, who expected exports to rise just 0.1%. A separate report showed that the manufacturing sector contracted last month.

Twitter: @vincent_trivett
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