A masked pro-European integration protester stands on a barricade during a rally in Independence square in Kiev December 22, 2013. European Union leaders said on Friday the door to a closer partnership with Ukraine remained open but not necessarily for the current Ukrainian leadership, which chose a bailout from Russia in preference to a trade deal with Brussels.
Good morning. Here's what you need to know.
- Markets in Asia were higher in overnight trading. Japan was closed for the emperor's birthday holiday, but the Hong Kong Hang Seng advanced 0.5% and the Shanghai Composite rose 0.2%. European markets are mostly higher with the exception of France and Spain. In the United States, futures point to a positive open.
- Across other asset classes, Treasuries, gold, and oil are all lower to begin the week, while the euro and the yen are both appreciating against the U.S. dollar. Trading is thin as many market participants are on holiday this week.
- China's 7-day repo rate — which serves as the benchmark for interbank lending there — surged to 9.8% Monday. The rate stands at the highest level since the liquidity crunch that gripped Chinese financial markets over the summer and is indicative of heightened stress despite large cash injections by the PBoC into the financial system last week.
- Apple announced a deal Sunday to bring the iPhone to China Mobile, the world's largest cellular carrier. The iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C will be available on China Mobile beginning January 17, 2014. Shares of Apple are up more than 3% in pre-market trading this morning.
- The International Monetary Fund will raise its forecasts for U.S. economic growth, according to IMF managing director Christine Lagarde, who cited progress on a budget deal in Washington. The imminent revisions mark a departure from the common pattern in recent years of disappointing growth developments prompting the Fund to continually revise forecasts lower.
- The parliamentary majority enjoyed by the party of Greek prime minister Antonis Samaras has dwindled to only three from the 26-seat majority established in the wake of the June 2012 elections. Over the weekend, conservative lawmaker Byron Polydoras was expelled from the majority coalition after he refused to back a new law extending property taxes to farmland demanded by Greece's international lenders at the IMF, EU, and ECB. " Lenders' greed and poor judgement is leading us straight towards humanitarian crisis," Polydoras said.
- Core PCE, the Federal Reserve's favorite measure of inflation, is released at 8:30 AM ET. In October, core PCE was 1.1% higher year on year. Market participants will be watching to see when this starts turning up. A wide array of indicators suggest that inflationary pressures may finally build again in 2014.
- Also out at 8:30 AM are November personal income and consumer spending data. Economists predict incomes jumped 0.5% last month after falling 0.1% in October, while spending growth is projected to have accelerated to 0.4% from 0.3%.
- The Chicago Fed releases the monthly reading of its National Activity Index at 8:30 AM as well. In October, the index crossed into negative territory, falling to -0.18.
- The University of Michigan releases the final results of its monthly consumer confidence survey at 9:55 AM. Preliminary results published earlier in the month suggest that the index surged to 82.5 from November's 75.1 reading. Economists predict the final survey results will show an even bigger gain to 82.6. Follow all of the data LIVE on Business Insider »
- DON'T MISS: THE MOST IMPORTANT CHARTS OF 2013 »
More From Business Insider