10 Things You Need To Know Before The Opening Bell

partying lohan AP

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

  • Asian markets were down in overnight trading, with the Shanghai Composite down a notable 1.89%. European markets are down or flat in early trading, and U.S. futures suggest a lower open. Get ahead with 10 Unusual Stocks Attracting Huge Interest In The Pre-Market Right Now >
  • Jobless claims come in at 8:30 AM ET. The results were positive, at 450,000, 10-thousand less than expected. Check out the details here >
  • India has increased interest rates in a bid to contain growth and slow inflation that has been hitting the country. Inflation is at a high 8.5%, but has shown signs of slowing. 
  • The European Union has agreed to a free trade deal with South Korea that will come into force July 1, 2011. The deal removes a litany of duties on goods traded between the two parties, though Europeans worry it will make Hyundai and Kia more competitive on the continent. 
  • Hungary has turned down the IMF’s request to start a new 300 billion forint ($1.39 billion) austerity budget, and will instead focus on a bank tax to alleviate the deficit in 2011. The country still intends to meet deficit requirements of less than 3% of GDP for 2011. Here’s why Europe is doomed to crisis after crisis >
  • Greece’s finance minister has said that his country will not be allowed to default on its debts or restructure because of the impact it would have on the rest of the eurozone. He believes any one failure would trigger a run on the other fringe states. Here’s who would get slammed in a Greek default >
  • UK retail sales data came in much lower than expected for July, indicating that the country’s austerity budget may be having a negative impact on consumers. Sales were expected to grow by 0.3% for the month, but instead fell 0.5% for July. This idea that austerer countries may see surprise backsliding is one of our 10 stories to watch for the rest of 2010 >
  • Goldman Sachs is now calling on the ISM Manufacturing index to dip below 50, that is, indicate a slow down in manufacturing growth, in early 2011. The result would not be necessarily a double-dip in the economy overall, but one for the manufacturing sector. Check out 11 signs that the double dip is dead >
  • Bank repossessions of homes have risen to their highest levels ever, notching 95,364 for the month of August, a 2% increase on July. Foreclosures for August declined 5.48% from August 2009. See these 15 signs the U.S. housing market is headed for a complete and total collapse >
  • The Senate could pass the long-delayed small business jobs bill today, with its passage in the House of Representatives thereafter a near certainty. Democrats suggest the bill will create 500,000 new jobs. Check out where all Obama’s stimulus cash has gone >
  • Bonus: Lindsay Lohan was spotted partying late into the night earlier this week, contradicting her post rehab and prison sobriety position.

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