– Stocks: The S&P 500 was little changed at 2,173.61 at 9:32 a.m. in New York, two points from an all-time high. The benchmark index has climbed for five straight months, the longest since 2014. S&P 500 companies posting results this week include Pfizer Inc., Procter & Gamble Co., Time Warner Inc. and Priceline Group Inc. About 58 percent of index members that have reported so far beat sales projections, while 81 percent topped profit estimates. Analysts estimate profit at S&P 500 companies fell 3.2 percent in the second quarter. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 0.5 percent. European equities had their biggest monthly advance since October, with lenders jumping the most in more than a year.
-Currencies: Sterling fell 0.2 percent to $1.3204 as a report showed U.K. manufacturing shrank more than initially forecast in July. The pound has fallen more than 11 percent against the dollar since Britain voted on June 23 to leave the European Union and posted its third consecutive monthly drop against the greenback last month. Hedge funds and other large speculators are the most bearish on the pound in almost 25 years amid speculation the Bank of England will cut interest rates for the first time in more than seven years this week. The yen retreated 0.3 percent to 102.33 per dollar after soaring 4 percent last week. BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda’s decision to aim low at last week’s meeting raises the stakes for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to deliver on a pledge for “bold” fiscal stimulus on Tuesday, when the government is due to announce details of a more than 28 trillion yen spending package.
-Bonds: The 10-year Treasury note yield climbed four basis points to 1.50 percent, Bloomberg Bond Trader data show. “The movement in investor expectations towards a flatter path for U.S. short-term interest rates seems broadly appropriate,” Dudley said in remarks prepared for a speech Monday at a conference in Bali. However, “it is premature to rule out further monetary policy tightening this year,” he said. The yield on Japan’s 10-year bonds climbed five basis points to minus 0.145 percent, after jumping eight basis points at the end of last week.
-Commodities: Most metals advanced, with nickel rising 1.2 percent and zinc climbing 1.7 percent on the London Metal Exchange after China’s official factory gauge unexpectedly fell below the dividing line between improvement and deterioration, leaving room for stimulus. China is considering a sweeping overhaul of its steel industry that would consolidate major steel producers into two giants, with one located in the north and the other in the south, according to people familiar with the plan. Iron ore futures on the Dalian Commodity Exchange climbed to a three-month high after gaining 7.6 percent last week.
-Mixed markets: U.S. investors are in a good mood at the start of the month. U.S. stock futures are pointing up. European markets are getting dragged down, however, by losses in the banking sector. «Stress tests» of the top 51 European banks published late Friday showed that they were generally in better condition than expected and could weather another sharp economic downturn. But investors were unhappy with the results for Spanish banks, and they hit the sell button. Meanwhile, a struggling Italian bank that essentially failed the test announced a rescue plan, saying it was raising 5 billion euros ($5.6 billion) and splitting off its bad loans into a separate entity. Shares in that bank are now up 3%. Asian markets ended the day with mixed results.
-Uber retreats in China: Uber is selling its China business to rival Didi Chuxing in exchange for a stake in the ride-hailing company. Uber has expanded rapidly in China but has racked up big losses in the face of intense competition from Didi, which is backed by Apple (AAPL, Tech30), Alibaba (BABA, Tech30) and Tencent (TCEHY). Baidu (BIDU, Tech30) has invested in Uber China.
– Tesla & SolarCity: Shares in SolarCity (SCTY) are rising premarket based on expectations that it will announce an agreement to merge with Tesla (TSLA). Tesla offered to acquire SolarCity for nearly $3 billion in June in a bid to create one sustainable energy company. Tesla CEO Elon Musk owns 22.5% of SolarCity and acts as its chairman. Musk is also a cousin of the two SolarCity co-founders.
-Earnings and economics: Theater chain AMC Entertainment (AMC) is among the key companies reporting quarterly results on Monday morning ahead of the open. Carmike Cinemas (CKEC) will report after the close. Carmike is being bought out by AMC to create the biggest movie theater chain in the world. The deal was originally announced in March.On the economic side, the Institute for Supply Management will be reporting on the health of the U.S. manufacturing industry at 10 a.m. ET.
-Weekly market recap: It was a good week for the Nasdaq but a bad week for the Dow. The Dow Jones industrial average dipped every single day last week and closed with a 0.8% loss. The Nasdaq rose for four consecutive trading days and finished the week 1.2% higher. The S&P 500 had a mixed week and closed with a 0.1%