10 Things You Need To Know Before The Opening Bell

George Soros

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

  • Asian markets were all up in overnight trading, with the Nikkei up 2.7%. European markets are mostly trading to the downside early today and U.S. futures suggest a slightly higher open.
  • Shanghai property prices fell nearly 50% week-over-week in what could be a stark warning of a real estate slowdown. More likely, these figures suggest a slowdown, but also the purchase of low cost homes rather than a typical mix. Here are 14 charts that show China’s dangerous housing bubble is far from over >
  • Industrial output in China has slowed as a result of tightening measures put in place by the government and potential weakening global demand. The slowdown is more healthy than threatening, with a decline of 2.8% from May to June. 
  • The Chinese government is struggling to deal with the consequences of $1.14 trillion in loans banks made to local governments from January 2010 to June. There are questions about the loan collateral and whether a slowdown will impact repayment.
  • The IMF has removed a negative tag from its description of China’s yuan, noting that it is no longer “substantially” undervalued. The change in IMF commentary is a result of the country’s efforts to boost domestic consumption and changes in the exchange rate. Here’s why China never had to revalue the yuan >
  • The steel manufacturer ArcelorMittal beat profit estimates by $440 million in Q2 with EBITDA of $3 billion. ArcelorMittal noted that Q3 was likely to be slower, due to demand dropping off and a potential slowdown in China. Here are 12 charts on how to play the big global steel rebound >
  • George Soros looks set to buy Dubai Holdings’ 4% stake in the Bombay Stock Exchange for $40 million. This would value the entire exchange at $1 billion. Check out George Soros’ secret team set to rewrite economics >
  • Spanish bank BBVA reported declining profits over Q2 2009 with an 18% fall in net profit in Q2 2010. The company’s Mexico division performed well, however, notching a 10% rise in net profit. 
  • The Spanish telecom giant Telefonica has reached agreement with Portugal Telecom to buy that company’s business in Brazil. The bid for the 40% stake in Vivo could be worth in excess of the €7.15 billion previously offered. 
  • UnitedHealth is on the brink of buying Executive Health Resources for $1.5 billion. Executive Health Resources provides services that focus on the efficiency of health care performance, among other matters.
  • Bonus: Photos of Mel Gibson’s ex Oksana Grigorieva have emerged that suggest she may have been beaten by the star.
  • Follow up to the minute markets coverage at Money Game >

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