By Dhirendra Tripathi — Stocks paused after a tech-led rally pushed NASDAQ Composite to another record high and as investors absorbed new comments about inflation from an influential Federal Reserve official.

Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic said Wednesday he was one of the seven Federal Open Market Committee members who projected a rate hike in late 2022, which was in the June summary of economic projections released last week.

Bostic told reporters after a speech that the economy is close to meeting the Fed's "substantial further progress" hurdle to start bond tapering.

The tech rally has been fueled by expectations for a low-growth, stable inflation environment.

But there have been signs prices are running hot. Prices for existing homes hit a record in May on scarce inventory.

On Thursday, big banks are looking to be given the green light to pay out billions of dollars in dividends and stock buybacks, assuming they pass the Fed’s latest annual stress test.

Here are three things that could affect markets tomorrow:

1. Eating out is back in

The parent company of Olive Garden and Longhorn Steakhouse is set to report fiscal fourth quarter numbers on Thursday. Darden Restaurants Inc (NYSE:DRI) is expected to post earnings per share of $1.76 on revenue of $2.17 billion, according to analysts tracked by

2. Meme stock bounce?

BlackBerry Ltd (NYSE:BB), once known for its high security push messaging mobiles and now as a meme stock, will report its fiscal 2022 first quarter results on Thursday. The company is seen posting an EPS of 5 cents on revenue of $168.25 million.

3. Special delivery

FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX), which has benefitted from a boom in shipping during the pandemic, is on Thursday expected to report an EPS of $4.97 on revenue of $21.46 billion for fiscal 2021 fourth quarter.

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