Growth data, market highs and Uber raided — 5 things to know today

December 23, 2014, 12:55 PM UTC
Dow Rises Over 400 Points Day After Fed Signals No Rise In Interest Rates
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 18: Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during the afternoon of December 18, 2014 in New York City. The stock market had its best day of 2014, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising over 400 points after the Federal Reserve signaled that it would not raise interest rates. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Photograph by Andrew Burton — Getty Images

Good morning, friends and Fortune readers.

Stocks look set to move higher at Tuesday’s open, adding to Monday’s record highs (the S&P 500 hit its 50th record close of the year) and likely pulling the Dow above 18,000 — a psychological level that would cap the year’s market gains. In Europe, stocks are higher following the record highs in the U.S. Monday. In other news, U.S. drugstore chain operator Walgreen (WAG) has reported a 16 percent rise in quarterly profit, helped by a record number of prescriptions filled.

Here’s what else you need to know about today.

1. U.S. economy surges

The U.S. economy grew at its quickest pace in 11 years in the third quarter, the Commerce Department said Tuesday — the strongest sign yet that growth has decisively shifted into higher gear. Third-quarter GDP was revised up to a 5.0% annual pace from the 3.9% rate reported last month, due to stronger consumer and business spending. It was the fastest growth pace since the third quarter of 2003. GDP growth has now been revised up by a total of 1.5 percentage points since the first estimate was published in October.

2. North Korea back online

Internet service in North Korea, at the center of a confrontation with the United States over the hacking of Sony (SNE) Pictures, is back online after the country experienced a complete outage for hours Tuesday before links were restored. U.S. officials said Washington was not involved. U.S.-based Dyn, a company that monitors Internet infrastructure, said the reason for the outage was not known but could range from technological glitches to a hacking attack.
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3. Kwok sent to prison

The former co-chairman of Hong Kong-listed developer Sun Hung Kai Properties, Thomas Kwok, was sentenced to five years in jail — and given a HK$500,000 ($64,440) fine — Tuesday in the city’s highest profile graft case. Rafael Hui, a former top Hong Kong government official who headed the civil service from 2005 to 2007, was sentenced to seven and half years in jail for his role in the scandal.

Their trial exposed the cozy relationship between the city’s powerful developers and government in the former British colony, with Sun Hung Kai paying Hui millions of dollars in bribes to gain government favor.

4. Uber raided in China

According to a newly released account, police in the Chinese city of Chongqing raided a training session organized by Uber. Citing a report by the 21st Century Business Herald newspaper, The Wall Street Journal said more than 20 drivers were in attendance—including one person who had recently been released from prison after a conviction for theft.

5. Keurig machines recalled
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Keurig (GMCR) Green Mountain will recall more than 6.6 million hot beverage-brewing machines in the United States that could overheat liquids and burn users. The affected machines are Keurig Mini Plus brewers with the model number K10 and serial numbers starting with 31, the company said on its website. The company will also recall 564,000 units in Canada.

—Reuters contributed to this report.

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