10 things you need to know before the opening bell

Here is what you need to know.

  1. Mnuchin moves to calm markets. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Sunday tweeted that he held individual phone calls with the CEOs of the six largest US banks and reiterated that they have “ample liquidity.” On Monday, he has a call scheduled with the President’s Working Group on financial markets, which includes the the Board of Governers of the Federal Reserve System, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
  2. The US government partially shuts down. The shutdown, which was sparked by President Donald Trump’s final-hour demand for $US5 billion of funding for a wall along the southern border, will likely last through at least December 27.
  3. The White House is reportedly mulling a meeting with Fed Chairman Jeorome Powell. Trump’s advisers have discussed a meeting between him and Fed Chairman Jerome Powell after a report last week said the president was thinking about firing the chairman, The Wall Street Journal says, citing a soure.
  4. Stock markets around the world were mixed. China’s Shanghai Composite (+0.43%) led the gains in Asia and Britain’s FTSE (-0.4%) trailed in Europe. The S&P 500 was set to open little changed near 2,418.
  5. Charles Schwab’s $US3 trillion investment chief outlines how his firm is preparing for the next stock-market meltdown. Jeff Kleintop, the global chief investment strategist at Charles Schwab, outlines three stock-market shifts that he expects to unfold as investors try and become more defensive over the next year.
  6. Machines driving a ‘fire sale’ is a top market risk in 2019, Deutsche Bank says. “There’s just no consensus on why stocks are selling off the way they are,” Torsten Sl√łk, Deutsche Bank’s chief international economist, said in a phone interview.
  7. Tesla slashes prices in China – again. The electric-car maker dropped the price of certain Model 3 sedans by up to 7.6%, for a starting price of 499,000 Chinese yuan ($US72,000), Reuters says.
  8. Amazon is expanding its fleet of cargo planes. The e-commerce giant announced Friday that it will add 10 cargo planes to its fleet over the next two years, bringing its total to 50, and it’s a sign that UPS and FedEx could be losing their biggest customer.
  9. Here’s how 2018’s biggest US IPOs have performed.Business Insider looked at the 23 US initial public offerings in 2018 that raised $US500 million or more – here’s how they did.
  10. US markets will close early for Christmas. US equity markets will close at 1 p.m. ET and the US Treasury market will stop trading at 2 p.m. ET. They will remain closed on Tuesday and reopen on Wednesday.

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