1. The passing storm: A measure of calm has returned to global markets after high volatility and sharp drops at the start of the week.
U.S. stock futures were modestly higher ahead of the open.
European markets declined in early trading, with losses around 0.5%.
Investors will have plenty of economic news and earnings to consider on Thursday.
One highlight: The Bank of England will announce its latest interest rate decision, along with economic forecasts that could provide new insight into Brexit.
2. Earnings craze: T-Mobile US, Twitter, Viacom and CVS Health are among the big names to report earnings ahead of the opening bell.
Investors will also hear from Canada Goose, Goodyear Tire, Kellogg, New York Times, Nielsen, Philip Morris International, Thomson Reuters, Tyson Foods and World Wrestling.
Viacom could face questions about a possible merger with CBS. The boards of the two companies recently said they were evaluating "a potential combination."
Then AIG, Activision Blizzard, Expedia, FireEye, Lions Gate Entertainment, News Corp., NVIDIA, Skechers USA and Zillow will release earnings after the close.
3. Stocks to watch -- Tesla, Swiss Re: Electric carmaker Tesla reported quarterly results Wednesday that showed losses soared to $675 million in the final three months of 2017.
The loss was narrower than Wall Street had expected. Tesla's stock was flat in after-hours trading.
Swiss Re confirmed that SoftBank is in talks to take a minority investment in the reinsurance company. Swiss Re said discussions were at an early stage.
4. Budget deal?: U.S. Senate leaders unveiled a massive two-year budget deal on Wednesday, a major victory for both parties that could prevent a government shutdown at the end of this week and increase the federal government's spending.
But the plan still needs to pass the House, where it's already facing strong headwinds.
The key outlying issue appears to be for how long to hike the debt ceiling, which the U.S. is expected to hit next month, though the exact parameters were still being negotiated.
5. Coming this week:
Thursday -- Earnings from News Corp, Viacom and Twitter
Friday -- PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics begins; Apple's HomePod goes on sale
- Stocks stabilize; Earnings bonanza; Tesla loss
- Sears surprise; Stocks stabilize; iHeartMedia bankruptcy
- Tax cut fuels record $200 billion stock buyback bonanza
- Tesla stock: The new Big Short?
- Bank earnings; Surging stocks; Iran deadline
- Stock futures rebound; Fed decision; Earnings galore
- US stocks weaken; Walmart earnings; HSBC stumbles
- China hits US sorghum; Tesla's pause; Goldman Sachs earnings
- Apple's gift to investors; Fed decision; Tesla earnings
- Tesla stock falls after NTSB announces investigation into deadly crash