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Good morning. Here’s what you need to know.
- Asian markets were mostly down in overnight trading with Shanghai Composite falling 0.6%. Europe is surging, as are US equities.
- All eyes are on Europe as EU leaders meet this Sunday looking for a resolution the debt crisis plaguing the region. But a second EU summit has already been confirmed for next week, as French president Nicolas Sarkozy and German chancellor Angela Merkel agree that the EFSF needs new crisis intervention rules. The EU is also considering using $1.3 trillion to solve the debt crisis by combining the temporary and permanent rescue funds in mid-2012. Now here’s your complete guide to this weekend’s EU summit >
- German business confidence fell to 106.4 in October, from 107.4 the previous month, declining for the fourth straight month. Despite the declines, business confidence has stayed at relatively high levels amid the European debt crisis.
- After reports emerged yesterday that Fed chairman Ben Bernanke told Senators there would be no more stimulus, it has been reported that the Fed is considering a scheme to buy more mortgage bonds, with the aim of lowering rates and stimulating housing some more.
- Groupon has announced its first official pricing for its IPO and it is selling 30 million shares at $16 – $18. After this offering Groupon plans to have two classes of outstanding common stock, with voting and conversion being the only difference between the two.
- General Electric posted Q3 operating income of $0.31 per share, which was in line with estimates. Profits were pushed up by a rebound in its lending business. GE’s revenue of $35.4 billion beat estimates. Chipotle announced Q3 net income of $60.4 million or $1.90 per diluted share, on revenue of $591.9 million, after the bell yesterday. Net income in the nine months to September grew 18.8% over the previous year. Check out Chipotle’s growth story >
- In more earnings news, Honeywell International is expected to report earnings of $1.00 per share. Oilfield services company Schlumberger Ltd. is expected to post earnings of $1.01 per share, up from $0.70 per share a year ago, and Verizon earnings are projected to be $0.55 per share. Now here are nine questions we desperately want answered this earnings season >
- S&P has said that France is among euro-region sovereigns likely to be downgraded in a “stressed economic scenario”. France’s credit rating could be cut by one or two notches if the eurozone falls into a recession and government borrowings increase. Spain, Italy, Ireland and Portugal would also see their sovereign ratings cut.
- Libyan leader Col. Muammar Qaddafi was killed in his hometown of Sirte yesterday. The conflict in Libya had curbed oil production, but analysts now estimate that the country could produce 1.6 million barrels of oil per day by the second half of 2012. Don’t Miss: The rise and fall of Muammar Qadaffi in pictures >
- Democrats and Republicans failed to pass their versions of the jobs bill through the Senate. In a 50-50 vote, Senators blocked a $35 billion component of President Obama’s jobs bill that aimed at hiring more teachers and first responders. They also failed to pass a Republican-backed proposal to repeal a 3% withholding requirement for government contractors.
- BONUS – Nicole Scherzinger and Lewis Hamilton have split up after four years together.
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