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23Dec2016 Pre-Market Commentary: Wall Street To Open Flat And Possibility Slip Marginally Into The Red, Crude Prices In The Low 52 Handle, US Dollar Remains Strong And Gold At 1132 Support

Written by Gary

US markets are pointing towards a flat and lackluster trading session today. Wall Street will be open all day as usual, but expect low volume as traders and investors head out early for the Christmas weekend.

Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

European markets are lower today as French and German shares fall. The French CAC 40 is off 0.07% while the German DAX is down 0.15%. The FTSE 100 in London is not trading.

What Is Moving the Markets

Reporting at 10:30 am today.

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

How Deutsche's big bet on Wall Street turned toxic

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Deutsche Bank's pursuit of success on Wall Street has come at a high price, a $7 billion plus penalty illustrating the extent of its decline since 2008 when its then chief executive claimed it was one of the "strongest banks in the world".

Banks lift global stocks, dollar holds near 14-year peak

LONDON (Reuters) - European stocks edged higher on Friday, helped by banks after two regional bellwethers settled investigations into U.S. mortgage securities, while oil and the dollar were on the back foot in light trading ahead of the Christmas break.

Icahn regulatory role gives activist investors strong Washington voice

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON/BOSTON (Reuters) - U.S. chief executives, already wrestling with a steady flow of activist investors in their board rooms, face a newly challenging landscape now that the loudest voice of the bunch will have the ear of the next president and his securities' rule makers.

U.S. hits Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank with toxic debt penalties

ZURICH/FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank have been hit with a combined penalty of more than $12 billion over the sale of U.S. toxic debt, further hampering two of Europe's leading investment banks as they struggle with weak earnings.

Credit Suisse agrees $5.3 billion U.S. mortgage settlement

ZURICH (Reuters) - Credit Suisse had agreed in principle to pay U.S. authorities $2.48 billion to settle claims it misled investors in residential mortgage-backed securities it sold in the run-up to the 2008 financial crisis, the Swiss bank said on Friday.

U.S. sues Barclays, ex-executives for mortgage securities fraud

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. Department of Justice on Thursday sued Barclays Plc and two former executives on civil charges of fraud in the sale of mortgage-backed securities during the run-up to the 2008-09 financial crisis.

China fines GM venture $29 million for monopolistic pricing: state TV

BEIJING (Reuters) - China will fine U.S. automaker General Motors Co's joint venture 201 million yuan ($29 million) for monopolistic pricing, state television reported on Friday, ending speculation after an official warned of penalties against a U.S. carmaker.

Putin says Russian economy is on the mend

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia's economic contraction is slowing, capital flight is fading and real wages are starting to recover, President Vladimir Putin said on Friday.

Volkswagen reaches deal with 80,000 U.S. 3.0-liter vehicle owners

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A federal judge said on Thursday that Volkswagen AG has reached an agreement in principle to provide "substantial compensation" to the owners of about 80,000 3.0-liter polluting diesel vehicles, a key hurdle to resolve the German automaker's emissions scandal.

The U.S. Interfered In Foreign Presidential Elections 81 Times From 1946-2000

Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

Something we should all be aware of.

From the LA Times:

The CIA has accused Russia of interfering in the 2016 presidential election by hacking into Democratic and Republican computer networks and selectively releasing emails. But critics might point out the U.S. has done similar things.

The U.S. has a long history of attempting to influence presidential elections in other countries - it's done so as many as 81 times between 1946 and 2000, according to a database amassed by political scientist Dov Levin of Carnegie Mellon University.

That number doesn't include military coups and regime change efforts following the election of candidates the U.S. didn't like, notably those in Iran, Guatemala and Chile. Nor does it include general assistance with the electoral process, such as election monitoring.

Levin defines intervention as "a costly act which is designed to determine the election results [in favor of] one of the two sides." These acts, carried out in secret two-thirds of the time, include funding the election campaigns of specific parties, disseminat ...

Putin Slams US Democratic Party As "Shameless Losers", Says Russia Alone Believed In Trump's Victory

Covering numerous topics, from foreign politics to the Russian budget, the price of oil, sports doping allegations as well as the US election during his annual end-of-year news conference, Russian president Vladimir Putin slammed the US Democratic party saying "the party that is called the Democrats has clearly forgotten the original meaning of that name" and added that "the use of administrative resources (by the Democrats) is absolutely shameless."

He continued the rout saying "outstanding figures in American history from the ranks of the Democratic Party would likely be turning in their graves. Roosevelt certainly would be. They (the Democrats) are losing on all fronts and looking elsewhere for things to blame. In my view this, how shall I say it, degrades their own dignity. You have to know how to lose with dignity."

Taking another shot at the US Democratic Party, Putin said it is losing on all fronts and that it is wrongly trying to blame President-elect Donald Trump's victory on external factors. "You need to learn how to lose gracefully," he said.

He added that "losers always look for someone to blame, but they should first of all look at themselves.

Ptuin then said that "the most important thing is what was revealed. It's not like people invented this information - what they reported is true. It showed how the Democratic Party manipulated the system against Bernie Sanders. Instead of apologizing, they began to look for people to blame."

Putin added that the question of who hacked the U.S. Democratic party was not important, but that the hacks revealed that public opinion in the United States was being manipulated. Ru ...

Frontrunning: December 23

Berlin market attack suspect killed in Italy (Reuters)

Tunisian Suspect Had a History of Criminal Activity, Extremism (WSJ)

Hijacked Libyan plane lands in Malta with 118 on board (Reuters)

Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse Settle U.S. Probes as Barclays Sued (BBG)

Italy Sets Up Fund to Help Troubled Banks (WSJ)

Europe Stocks Halt Drop as Italian Aid Lifts Bonds: Markets Wrap (BBG)

Dollar inches lower into Christmas lull (Reuters)

Syrian rebels shell Aleppo after withdrawal (Reuters)

President Xi Open to Growth in China Falling Below 6.5% (BBG)

Trump's Senior White House Staff Takes Shape (WSJ)

Bitcoin Surges Above $900 on Geopolitical Risks, Fed Tightening (BBG)

Putin Says He Knew Donald Trump Would Win (

Hijacked Libyan Airplane With 111 Passengers Lands In Malta, Suspect Threatens to Blow Up Plane

Up to two hijackers, described as being "pro-Gaddafi," have seized control of Afriqiyah Airways flight 8U209 in Libya, forcing the Airbus A320 plane to land in Malta. The suspected hijackers of the airliner with 111
passengers aboard have threatened to blow up the plane on the runway at
the international airport in Malta, the WSJ reports.

The airliner, a Airbus A320, landed at Malta's Luqa airport at 1030 GMT, according to Flightradar24.

Hijacked Afriqiyah Airways flight diverted to Malta

— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) December 23, 2016

The plane, an Afriqiyah Airways flight to Tripoli from Sabha, was diverted by a passenger who demanded to be flown to the Mediterranean. In a statement, Malta airport authorities confirmed that there has been "an unlawful interference" at the airport and that emergency teams have been dispatched to the site.

"The pilot reported to the control tower in Tripoli that they were being hijacked, then they lost communication with him," a security official from Mitiga airport in Libya told Reuters. "The pilot tried very hard to have them land at the correct destination but they refused."

????#Libyan plane with 118 passengers on board lands in

What Trump's Cabinet Picks Mean for Markets

The people in President-elect Donald Trump's administration are extremely shareholder friendly, but investors need to keep their enthusiasm in check.

Retailers Lose Willpower as Christmas Approaches

Even the full-price stalwarts cave in to discounts the week before Christmas, and those that have been cutting prices slash even more.

Euro-Dollar Parity: It's All About the Greenback

The euro parity party plans are being dusted off. But the rising dollar needs watching closely.

Capitol Report: White House: Robots may take half of our jobs, and we should embrace it

The Obama administration wants policymakers to prepare for an economy with far more automation than we have now.

Outside the Box: These technical charts tell you to stick with stocks

Just look at how the S&P 500 has fared and the relative performances of stocks vs. bonds and stocks vs. commodities, says longtime technical analyst Michael Kahn.

Bricks-and-mortar retailers have the edge over Amazon in final pre-holiday shopping days

It's not something you've heard often of late, but heading into the home stretch of the holiday season shopping, bricks-and-mortar retail has got the edge.

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