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Morning Reading: European Banks Borrow, Flurry of Housing Data Continues

Updated for reverse in European stocks, U.S. futures

What to watch, courtesy of Yahoo! Finance's Elizabeth Trotta:

Good morning,

U.S. futures are pointing to losses for Wall Street as European markets reversed. Stocks initially reacted positively to ECB lending will help alleviate the debt crisis. Europe's banks borrowed almost 490 billion euros from the ECB in three year loans on Wednesday. Despite the initial warm reception in the markets, some worry the heavy borrowing also reflects the scale of the pressures European banks are under.

Other things you should know today:

Oracle shares are plummeting in the premarket after earnings fell well short of Wall Street's estimates, thanks to soft sales, for the first time in a decade. [See: Oracle Results Shock Investors, Shares Plunge]

Meanwhile, elsewhere in the tech world, Research In Motion reportedly turned down takeover advances from Amazon and other possible suitors, preferring to go it alone. The two are still in talks to expand commercial ties, sources told Reuters. [See: Amazon Weighed Buying RIM, Interest Cooled]

On the economic data front, the flurry of housing data continues, as the Mortgage Bankers Association said early Wednesday that applications for home mortgages fell 2.6% last week, led by a drop in purchase demand as despite low interest rates. [See: Mortgage Applications Eased Last Week] That rather bland report comes after data on housing starts helped to prop up the market Tuesday. [See: Rent Party! Apartments Drive Strong Housing Starts Data] Data on existing home sales are expected at 10 a.m. today. But before the party gets too out of control, it's worth noting that 46% of homes sold in November were either short sales or homes foreclosed on and repossessed by lenders, according to a survey by Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance released Tuesday. [See: Foreclosure sales still pummeling home prices]

A few more early headlines to note:

Economic data to watch:

7 a.m. MBA Mortgage Index: -2.6M, Prior 4.1%

10 a.m. Existing Home Sales: Expected 5.03M Prior 4.97M

10:30 a.m. Crude Inventories: Prior -1.932M

Thursday: Jobless Claims, GDP Third Estimate, University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment, Leading Indicators, FHFA Housing Price Index

Friday: Durable Orders, Personal Income and Spending, PCE Core Prices, New Home Sales