Good morning, friends and Fortune readers.
U.S. stocks look set for a steep drop at the start of trading, following a global sell-off Tuesday that has pulled Chinese equities down over 5 percent. In Europe, stocks are tumbling too. On Monday, the Dow fell triple-digits in its worst trading session in months as the price of crude oil continued to fall. Here’s what else you need to know about today.
1. Will Krispy Kreme (KKD) heat up?
The doughnut chain, famous in the South for its red lights and original glazed, will release earnings today, and will likely hope to see a reversal of a disappointing second quarter. The chain is trying to focus on beverages, but so far hasn’t seen the results it wants, according to Dow Jones.
2. Sony’s hacks get weird
The hack at Sony has officially jumped the shark. The attack on the company’s movie production division, rumored to be the work of North Korea — pay back for the upcoming North Korea-spoofing flick “The Interview” — has revealed the aliases celebrities use to check into hotels. Rob Schneider is “Nazzo Good.” Jessica Alba is “Cash Money.” Ice Cube is “O’Shea Jackson,” which, in a strange twist isn’t really an alias — it’s the rapper/actor’s given name. North Korea has denied any involvement in the attacks.
3. Small businesses are upbeat
Small-business sentiment hit a seven-year high in November, according to the National Federation of Independent Business, which released its latest findings Tuesday. The group’s index rose 2 points to 98.1, rising to its highest level since February 2007.
4. Crude bounces back
Yesterday, the price of Brent crude oil hit a five-year low, bottoming out at $65.29 a barrel in Asian trading, according to Reuters. The fuel got a bit of a boost this morning, though, with the price lately just shy of $67.
5. Gruber takes the stand
Economist Jonathan Gruber — one of the architects of ObamaCare, who made the news recently by reportedly saying the authors of the healthcare law had taken advantage of the “stupidity” of the American voter — will testify before Congress today to explain his provocative comments.