10 Things You Need To Know Before The Opening Bell

Natalie Portman

Photo: AP

Good morning. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Asian markets were higher in overnight trading, with the Hang Seng up 1.54%. Major European indices are also higher and U.S. futures suggest a positive open. Now, here are the 10 stocks attracting unusual interest this morning >
  • Import and export prices are released at 8:30 AM ET. The data should be a good indicator of inflationary trends. Follow the release at Money Game >
  • The flood crisis in Australia continues today, with the city of Brisbane now under water. More than 5% of the world’s coal supply used in steel production will not make it to market as a result of the floods. Check out these remarkable photos of the flood >
  • Bank of China opened up trading between the dollar and yuan in the United States today, a step in the currency’s move into international markets. It is the first market beyond Hong Kong the currency is being traded in. For more on China’s future, here’s what Credit Suisse thinks China will look like in 2015 >
  • AIG has sold its Taiwanese division for $2.16 billion to Ruen Chen Investment Holdings. The deal needs to be formalized by the Taiwanese government, which rejected a deal previously.
  • Portugal held a successful bond auction this morning, but still looks likely to take a bailout from the IMF and EU. European leaders are discussing the expansion of the region’s bailout fund, as the threat of Spain looms. For more on the world’s default risks, check out the 19 countries most likely to default >
  • Europe’s industrial production surged in November, up 1.2%. Expectations were for a 0.5% rise, and Spain surprised with its own 1.2% growth.
  • Airbus has locked up a deal with Indian airline company IndiGo worth $15.6 billion. The deal will see the European plane manufacturer sell the airline 180 planes. Think this is a big deal? Check out the billion dollar deals India inked with the U.S. last year >
  • The Trans-Alaska pipeline, shut down due to a leak, is being reopened. The restart of the pipeline that ships BP oil will at first be limited.
  • A new U.S. Senate report will criticise Goldman Sachs for its conflicts of interest, associated with the Abacus deal as well as others. Goldman has also been downgraded by JPMorgan. See how Goldman Sachs is adjusting to deal with the public pressure >
  • Bonus: Natalie Portman has expressed her excitement at getting fat after she’s switched roles from ballerina to pregnant mother to be.

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