10 things before the opening bell

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10 THINGS BEFORE THE OPENING BELL

NEW YORK, USA - MARCH 25: Tourists that lined up for take a photo of the Charging Bull are seen during COVID-19 pandemic in New York City, United States on March 25, 2021. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Welcome to 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

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1. Global stocks falter as investors fret about inflation and corporate earnings. Price pressures are rising, while another missed bond payment by Chinese property giant Evergrande has revived contagion jitters. See the latest moves on the market.

2. Bank of America says supply chain issues have made the upcoming earnings season a "make or break" moment for investors. Companies must deal with backlogs at ports on the West Coast and dole out higher pay to mitigate workforce shortages during the third quarter. Here's how the firm sees things shaking out.

3. BlackRock's head of iShares investment strategy thinks 'stagflation' concerns are overblown. Inflation is a near-term threat, but investors shouldn't bet on a return to the landscape of the 1970s, said Gargi Chaudhuri, whose division oversees $2.3 trillion in assets. He explained two key market themes that will define the upcoming earnings season.

4.Earnings on deck: Fastenal Co., Pinnacle Financial Partners, and SHIFT Inc., all reporting.

5. Goldman Sachs cut its US GDP forecast for a 3rd straight month. The firm pointed to the blow that COVID-19 has dealt to consumer spending, as well as the global semiconductor shortage that it said likely "won't improve." Here's why the "virus drag" could continue to plague the economy.

6. Starbucks is set to surge 21% on the back of its booming loyalty program. Bank of America analysts see the coffee mogul fending off competition and growing fast. Get the numbers on how Starbucks has dominated the coffee business.

7. A SPAC run by 'Moneyball' star Billy Beane is in talks to merge with SeatGeek. Sports-industry-focused SPAC Redball Acquisition is in talks with SeatGeek about a potential business combination, and Oakland A's exec is in the mix. The deal could be announced as early as this week. 

8. Wedbush says Palo Alto Networks could rise 22% amid increased government spending to counter cyber threats. As the federal government puts more money into cybersecurity, analysts anticipate consistent growth in the stock going into the next year. See Wedbush's breakdown.

9. A 32-year-old CEO who built a $5 billion crypto startup shared his thoughts on the digital asset landscape. He explained the need for layer-two networks, as they bring scalability to layer one blockchains like bitcoin or ethereum. He shared which segment of DeFi he sees having the most potential.

10. Warren Buffett expert Robert Hagstrom broke down the key elements of the investor's "ultimate money mind." Buffett didn't buy stocks last spring because, according to Hagstrom, he had concerns about the pandemic. See why Hagstrom doesn't anticipate Buffett making another elephant-sized acquisition.


Compiled by Phil Rosen. Feedback? Email prosen@insider.com or tweet @philrosenn.

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