10 Things You Need To Know This Morning

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

  • Asian markets are up in overnight trading, and European indices are rising significantly in early trading. U.S. futures point to a slightly lower opening. Check out these 12 charts about the amazing global rebound >
  • North Korea has threatened to close its border with South Korea in the latest escalation of the Korean Peninsula crisis. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in South Korea today discussing options for action with South Korean leaders.
  • Shanghai property prices showed a steep week over week decline of 16% for the period ending May 23 increasing worries that the Chinese property bubble is bursting. This comes just days after China announced it was not going to tax individuals for the second properties they own. See why Shanghai is the most obvious real estate bubble ever >
  • The House energy committee has released documents showing BP made several attempts in the 24 hour period before the explosion to stop what were mechanical failures on the Deepwater Horizon platform. The cost of the oil slick disaster for BP could soar to $60 billion on news that they may be held liable for every barrel of oil spilled. Check out these NASA pictures of the oil slick from outer space >
  • The sovereign wealth fund of Qatar is interested in buying part of the U.S. Treasury department’s stake in Citigroup. Previously, the Qatari sovereign wealth fund has purchased positions in Credit Suisse and Barclays.
  • The OECD has called on Europe and the United States to cut spending and raise interest rates in a effort to return their governments to normal debt levels. The organisation says those cuts must be made by 2011.
  • Moody’s has come out with positive news about the U.S. debt rating saying it is unlikely to be under pressure in the next 12 to 18 months. The U.S. AAA rating could be threatened in the long term by the U.S. government’s tenuous debt position. Check out the 10 countries most likely to default >
  • Italy has moved to defend its fiscal position by instituting $30 billion in budget cuts. The cuts target a wide array of government spending provisions are are equivalent to 1.6% of GDP. 
  • In further signs that credit markets are tightening, swapping dollars for euros has risen to its highest cost since 2008. Buyers must now pay more than Libor for the swap transaction.
  • Jamaica has returned to some sense of calm today, after police took control of areas of Kingston dominated by the gang of the drug warlord they are pursuing. Violence has thus far killed 30, 26 of whom are civilians.  
  • Bonus: Wyclef Jean has urged Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt to adopt next from Haiti, his home country. An adoption, according to Jolie, is not imminent.
  • Follow the markets all day with up to the minute coverage at The Money Game >


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