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Morning Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

Tickers in this article: AAPL BA CCL EMC IBM JPM

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Here are 10 things you should know for Friday, March 15:

1. -- U.S. stock futures were suggesting Wall Street would open flat Friday as investors await production data from the U.S.

European shares were trading lower early Friday while Asian stocks ended mixed. Japan's Nikkei 225 rose 1.5% to close at 12,560.95.

2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. Friday includes the Consumer Price Index for February at 8:30 a.m. EDT, industrial production and capacity utilization figures for February at 9:15 a.m., and the University of Michigan's sentiment index for March at 9:55 a.m.

3. -- U.S. stocks on Thursday finished with gains as the Dow Jones Industrial Average posted its 10th-straight winning session for the first time since 1996, and the S&P 500 neared its all-time high on Thursday after a drop in last week's jobless claims bolstered confidence in the world's largest economy.

The Dow rose 83.86 points, or 0.58%, to close at 14,539.14.

The S&P 500 climbed 0.56% to 1,563.25, inching within 2 points of its record closing level of 1,565.15 reached in October 2007. The Nasdaq closed up 0.43% to 3,258.93.

4. -- The Federal Reserve approved a request from JPMorgan Chase (JPM) to buy back up to $6 billion in stock through the first quarter of 2014 and boost its dividend in the second quarter to 38 cents a share from 30 cents.

The Fed did say, however, in its release of the annual stress test results of big U.S. banks, that JPMorgan had to resubmit its capital plan because of the central bank's concerns about "weaknesses" in its plan or planning process.

"JPMorgan Chase is fully committed to meeting all of the Fed's requirements," CEO Jamie Dimon said in a statement.

5. -- Samsung unveiled its eagerly anticipated Galaxy S4 smartphone at a glitzy event in New York on Thursday night, launching another rival to Apple's(AAPL) iconic iPhone.

Kicking off the launch, J.K. Shin, president of Samsung's mobile communications division, described the fourth-generation phone as "a life companion for a simpler life", adding that the S4 is "slimmer yet stronger" than its predecessor, the popular S3.

The S4 is just 7.9 mm thick and weighs 130 grams, compared to the S3, which is 8.6 mm thick and weighs 133 grams. Samsung's latest offering also has a 5-inch screen, compared to the S3's 4.8-inch display.

"In our view, the S4 possesses all the relevant new features for an industry-leading product," wrote ISI Group analyst Brian Marshall, in a note released on Thursday. "Most importantly, it features a large canvas (i.e., 5.0" AMOLED display) which we believe is critical as users look to converge smartphone and tablet functionality into one device."