10 Things You Need To Know This Morning

Kate Winslet

Europe in austerity slowdown fears and Fed split on future QE. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Asian markets were mixed in overnight trading, with the Nikkei down a notable 1.33%. European markets are all lower in morning trading and U.S. futures suggest a lower open. See 10 Story Stocks Attracting Huge Interest In The Pre-Market Right Now >
  • Existing home sales numbers are released at 10:00 AM ET. Sales are expected to dip even further in July, continuing the trend from June. Follow up to the minute coverage of the release at Money Game >
  • The yen surged overnight, rising to its highest level in 15 years. This move in the Japanese currency may be based on declining appetites for risk worldwide. The yen is now trading around 84.33 to the dollar. Don’t miss: 10 monster bubbles in the making >
  • Toyota has come under further scrutiny from U.S. authorities for potential engine stalling issues with Corolla automobiles. The years under review are 2005, 2006, and 2007, and add to a list of lengthy recall worries for the company. 
  • Potash is planning to stop BHP Billiton’s $39 billion bid for the company by building a bevy of other bidders. The company believes it is being undervalued in BHP’s cash offer. Here’s why Potash rejected the BHP offer >
  • Rio Tinto is rumoured to be plotting a bid for Potash with a Chinese investor also a major part of the deal. China’s Sinochem remains interested, but Vale has dropped out of the bidding. 
  • Germany’s deficit rose dramatically in H1 2010 as a result of heavy spending on bailing out the country’s banking sector. The deficit ratio for the country for H1 2010 was 3.5%, above Maastricht treaty levels.
  • The growth stories for Germany and France don’t look to be enough to pull the eurozone’s fringe out of their economic malaise. Instead, those countries are starting to show signs austerity measures are forcing their services sectors to contract, rather than expand. 
  • Greece is one of the countries hit hardest by austerity, and now the government is calling on the countries banks to merge. The Athens stock exchange fell sharply on the news today, down 1.17%. Here’s who gets slammed in a Greek default >
  • The Fed remains split on its quantitative easing operations, and the August 10 meeting had 7 of the FOMC’s 17 members stand up against further balance sheet action. Friday’s meeting a Jackson Hole should provide Fed Chair Ben Bernanke more chance to push the issue forward. Here are the horror Fed charts that sent Bernanke back to QE >
  • Bonus: Kate Winslet was seen this weekend with new model-boyfriend Louis Dowler in London. She recently split from director Sam Mendes, whom she was married to for seven years.

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