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Reports US

US stock market, economy and companies update (March 10, 2014)

March 10, 2014, Monday, 14:33 GMT | 10:33 EST | 19:03 IST | 21:33 SGT
Contributed by Trade The News

- Weak economic data out of China and Japan drove steep declines in Asia session trading. Europe initially shrugged off the Chinese data thanks to some decent industrial production numbers but indices have given up all of their gains and dropped into negative territory. As of writing, the DJIA is down 0.56%, the S&P500 is down 0.34% and the Nasdaq is down 0.38%.

- Chinese stocks listed on US markets have tumbled in the early going, following closely by the major commodities names. Comex traded copper futures slid more than 3.5% on Friday and fell another 2.8% in the US premarket. The contract has bounced back in the last two hours. Trading volumes are as much as 90% above average, and speculators switched from a net-long position in copper to a net-short position, according to CFTC data. Traders watched iron ore prices plummet 9% in London trading. Front-month WTI crude has dropped 1.5% to just above $101 in heavy volume.

- EUR/USD has traded in a tight range, well contained in the upper half of the 1.38 handle. Sterling dropped from 1.6735 as low as 1.6630 as market participants jumped the gun in trying to get in on FX flows in the belief Vodafone would agree to a preliminary €7.0 billion deal to buy Spanish cable company ONO. Reports out this morning suggest the deal will still take a few days to complete.

- The media company backed by five newspaper publishers including Gannett and McClatchy is reportedly looking to sell its website. Classified Ventures is looking to sell, which lets user check prices, compare models and read reviews of auto dealers, for up to $3 billion. Shares of MNI are up 22% on the news.

- Irish produce firm Fyffes has agreed to merge with Chiquita in a stock-for-stock deal. According to the terms, Chiquita will hold 50.7% of the new ChiquitaFyffes organization and Fyffes to own 49.3%. The combined equity value of the deal is $1.07B.

- McDonalds is only down slightly this morning after reporting negative comps for the month of February. US comps fell 1.6% "amid challenging industry dynamics and severe winter weather." The CEO warned that relatively flat year-to-date global comparable sales will pressure margins in the first quarter.

***Looking Ahead***
- (PE) Peru Jan Trade Balance: -$459Me v +$553M prior
- (MX) Mexico Feb Nominal Wages: No est v 3.9% prior
- 11:30 (US) Treasury to sell combined $48B in 3-Month and 6-Month Bills
- 12:00 (US) USDA World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE)
- 13:00 (DE) German Chancellor Merkel addresses CDU Innovation Conference in Dresden

***Economic Data***
- (CA) Canada Feb Housing Starts (Annualized): 192.1K v 190.0Ke