5 things to know before the stock market opens Thursday

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

1. Not so gloomy August

2. From ADP to GDP

Construction workers erect a building in downtown Miami, Florida, on June 14, 2023. 

Jim Watson | AFP | Getty Images

ADP reported on Wednesday that U.S. job growth slowed more than expected in August. The firm said private employers added 177,000 jobs this month, fewer than the 200,000 economists surveyed by Dow Jones predicted and well below the revised total of 371,000 added in July. Those numbers come ahead of the Department of Labor’s jobs report, which is due Friday. Also on Wednesday, U.S. economic growth was revised lower. Gross domestic product increased at a 2.1% annualized rate last quarter, the government said in its second estimate of GDP for the April-June period. While still solid, that was revised down from the 2.4% pace reported last month.

3. Walmart wager

Walmart is hosting its first seller summit businesses that are part of its third-party marketplace. The two-day event includes how-to sessions and remarks by the retailer’s top leaders.

Melissa Repko | CNBC

Walmart is looking for ways to close the wide gap with rival Amazon. The retail giant on Wednesday announced new efforts to attract and retain sellers with its third-party marketplace as it kicked off its inaugural Walmart Marketplace Seller Summit. The summit is a two-day invitation-only event featuring how-to sessions. As part of its increased focus on the marketplace, Walmart said it is expanding the third-party business to Chile, the first market outside of North America; offering an option that allows sellers to pay Walmart to fulfill online orders of bigger and bulkier items; and increasing the number of brand shops on its website.

4. Big beat overseas

General view of the UBS building in Manhattan on June 5, 2023 in New York City.

Eduardo Munoz Alvarez | View Press | Corbis News | Getty Images

Shares of Swiss bank UBS reached their highest level since 2008 in early trading Thursday after the company reported a second-quarter profit of $28.88 billion. Analysts expected a net profit of $12.8 billion, according to a Reuters poll. It was UBS’ first quarterly earnings report since completing its takeover of stricken rival Credit Suisse, which the bank said played a role in its profit beat. UBS, Switzerland’s largest bank, also said it continues to work on integrating Credit Suisse into the business and announced thousands of layoffs will occur as a result.

5. Buffett’s birthday

Warren Buffett tours the floor ahead of the Berkshire Hathaway Annual Shareholder’s Meeting in Omaha, NE.

David A. Grogan | CNBC

The Oracle of Omaha celebrated his 93rd birthday Wednesday and CNBC’s Yun Li reports he’s doing better than ever when it comes to business. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate is the biggest non-tech company by market capitalization and its shares have hit an all-time high. Buffett was active over the past year, traveling to Japan for the first time in more than 11 years and buying underappreciated Japanese stocks. He was also one of the few investors who managed to take advantage of higher rates, that’s in part due to Berkshire’s mountain of cash, which was valued at $147 billion at the end of June.

— CNBC’s Sarah Min, Jesse Pound, Melissa Repko, Elliot Smith, Yun Li and Reuters contributed to this report.

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