10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Here is what you need to know.

Chinese manufacturing fell. The latest gauge of Chinese manufacturing sank to its lowest reading in six years. The Caixin-Markit Flash PMI fell to 47.0 in September, down from 47.3 in August, missing expectations for an uptick to 47.5. The internals of the report were weak as output, new orders, new export orders, and employment all fell at a faster pace. The Chinese yuan weakened 0.1% to 6.3839 per dollar.

Euro zone PMIs mostly miss. Germany’s Flash Manufacturing PMI fell to 52.5 from its previous reading of 53.3 and Flash Services PMI slipped to 54.3 from 54.9. The news was a bit better in France as Flash Manufacturing PMI regained the expansion line with a 50.4 print, up from last month’s 48.3. French Flash Services PMI also improved, climbing to 51.2 from 50.6. The euro zone as a whole was disappointing. Flash Manufacturing eased to 53.9 from 53.5 and Flash Services slipped to 54.0 from 54.4. The euro is stronger by 0.3% at 1.1158.

Greece’s prime minister unveiled his new cabinet. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announced his new coalition government. Euclid Tsakalotos retained the position of finance minister after serving in the role for a brief time following the resignation of Yannis Varoufakis. Greece’s 2-year yield is up 15 basis points at 10.45%.

Volkswagen has recovered its early losses. Shares of Volkswagen plunged more than 7% in early trade, but have come roaring back and are now little changed. The stock lost 29% in the previous two sessions after it was reported the company developed software that released false emissions data. On Tuesday, Volkswagen issued a profit warning and announced it would set aside €6.5 billion ($US7.27 billion) to “cover the necessary service measures and other efforts to win back the trust of our customers.”

Beijing is accusing China’s largest broker of front-running its stock market rescue. Bloomberg reports, China’s largest securities broker, CITIC, allegedly used advanced knowledge of the government’s stock rescue plan to benefit the firm. Chinese state-run media has reported seven executives, including president Cheng Boming, are under investigation for alleged offenses including front-running. However, a CITIC spokeswoman told Bloomberg the company hasn’t received formal notification regarding the nature of the investigation.

MetLife upped its buybacks. The largest US life insurer raised its share buyback program buy $US1 billion. According to Reuters, the company had just $US261 million remaining on its previously announced buyback plan.

Instagram has more than 400 million monthly users. Facebook’s Instagram has crossed the 400 million monthly user mark, according to a company blog post published on Tuesday. Active monthly users are up 33% from December, when it was reported the photo sharing app had 300 million users. According to the release, more than 75% of users live outside the US.

Global stock markets trade mixed. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng (-2.3%) paced the decline in Asia as Japan’s Nikkei remained closed for holiday. In Europe, Britain’s FTSE (+1.4%) leads the gains. S&P 500 futures are up 4.50 points at 1936.25.

US economic data is light. Crude oil inventories are due out at 10:30 a.m. ET. The US Treasury will auction $US35 billion 5-year notes at 1 p.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is higher by 2 basis points at 2.15%.

Earnings reports remain slow. H.B. Fuller, Steelcase and Worthington report after the closing bell.

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