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5 Things to Know Before the Stock Market Opens Tuesday

Spencer Platt | Getty Images
  • Target reported earnings.
  • Rupert Murdoch acknowledged Fox hosts endorsed Trump's false election claims.
  • Meta delves deeper into artificial intelligence.

Here are the most important news items that investors need to start their trading day:

1. So long, February

The bulls will be eager to say farewell to February. All three major indices are set to finish in the red for the month as we enter the final day of the frame. The Dow has suffered the most. It's down 3.5% for February and negative on the year. The Nasdaq and S&P 500, meanwhile, are still positive for the year. Tuesday also brings a slate of key earnings reports, particularly Target (see below), and more economic data, namely consumer confidence, wholesale inventories, Chicago PMI and the S&P Case-Shiller home prices index. Follow live markets updates.

2. Target reports earnings

Target is joining the cautious chorus. The big box retailer, which reported earnings Tuesday, issued soft guidance for the year, a week after Walmart and Home Depot also warned they're preparing for a slowdown in consumer spending. Target said it expects full-year earnings per share of between $7.75 to $8.75, which is below Wall Street expectations of $9.23 per share. On the bright side for Target, the company topped Wall Street's earnings expectations for the first time in a year as it squeezed out a sales gain for the holiday quarter.

3. Murdoch under the microscope

Rupert Murdoch
Drew Angerer | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Rupert Murdoch

More documents from the $1.6 billion Dominion Voting defamation lawsuit against Fox News and its parent company came out Monday night, and they aren't pretty for the conservative network. In the latest court filings, Fox Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch acknowledged in a deposition that some hosts on his right-wing cable channels, Fox News and Fox Business, endorsed then-President Donald Trump's false claims about the 2020 election being stolen from him. "Some of our commentators were endorsing it," Murdoch said. "They endorsed." Fox's lawyers have defended the company by saying this is all a matter of free speech protected by the First Amendment. The case is slated to go to trial in mid-April.

4. Meta gets deeper into AI

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg demonstrates an Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset and Oculus Touch controllers during the Oculus Connect 3 event in San Jose, California, U.S., on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg demonstrates an Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset and Oculus Touch controllers during the Oculus Connect 3 event in San Jose, California, U.S., on Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016.

Facebook parent company Meta said Monday it would create a new group that will focus on what's called generative artificial intelligence. The move makes Meta the latest Big Tech company to get in on the AI craze, along with Microsoft Bing's OpenAI-powered chatbot, OpenAI's own ChatGPT and Google's Bard product. It also comes days after Meta itself announced its own large language model, LLaMA. "We have a lot of foundational work to do before getting to the really futuristic experiences, but I'm excited about all of the new things we'll build along the way," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said.

5. Ukraine on verge of losing mining city

A view of damage after attacks as Russia-Ukraine war continues in Bakhmut, Ukraine on February 24, 2023.
Anadolu Agency | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
A view of damage after attacks as Russia-Ukraine war continues in Bakhmut, Ukraine on February 24, 2023.

The situation in Bakhmut, a mining city in eastern Ukraine, is deteriorating for Ukrainian forces. Russian troops and mercenaries from the Vladimir Putin-aligned Wagner Group have been targeting the city for months, slowly chipping away at its defenses and leaving a wide swath of destruction. "The enemy is constantly destroying everything that can be used to protect our positions, to gain a foothold and ensure defense," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Monday. Follow live war updates.

– CNBC's Samantha Subin, Melissa Repko, Lillian Rizzo, Kif Leswing and Holly Ellyatt contributed to this report.

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