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09Oct2017 Pre-Market Commentary: Wall Street To Open Fractionally Higher, Trading Volume Will Be Thin, No Major Data Releases Are On Tap For Today, WTI Crude And The US Dollar Remain Weak

Written by Gary

US stock market index futures pointed to a modestly higher open (SPY +0.1%), with the major indexes up around 0.2%. with most banks and federal institutions closed for the Columbus Day holiday.

Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

European markets are mixed today. The DAX is up 0.05% while the CAC 40 gains 0.02%. The FTSE 100 is off 0.23%.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

Germany, China lift world stocks, Spanish worries simmer

LONDON (Reuters) - World shares rose on Monday, with Chinese stocks hitting 21-month highs and the German index setting a new record, while political uncertainty triggered big moves in sterling, the Turkish lira and Spanish debt.

Google uncovered Russia-backed ads on YouTube, Gmail: Washington Post

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Google has discovered that Russian operatives spent tens of thousands of dollars on ads on YouTube, Gmail, Google search and other products, The Washington Post reported on Monday.

Weinstein Co board ousts Harvey Weinstein after harassment allegations

(Reuters) - The Weinstein Co has fired co-Chairman Harvey Weinstein, effective immediately, following reports of sexual harassment allegations against the executive, who was one of Hollywood's biggest power brokers, the film production company said on Sunday.

DSW investor group rejects Linde-Praxair merger offer

BERLIN (Reuters) - German investors' association DSW recommended on Monday that shareholders in industrial gases group Linde not tender their shares in an exchange offer for its planned $80 billion merger with U.S. peer Praxair .

Dove faces PR disaster over ad that showed black woman turning white

LONDON (Reuters) - A social media outcry over an advertisement for Dove body wash which showed a black woman removing her top to reveal a white woman has escalated into a public relations disaster for the Unilever brand.

Exclusive: Honeywell prepares to spin off businesses - sources

(Reuters) - Honeywell International Inc plans to spin off non-core assets and create at least two new publicly listed companies, as the U.S. industrial conglomerate seeks to streamline its business, according to people familiar with the matter.

Uber suspends unlicensed service in Norway in change of tack

(Reuters) - Uber said on Monday it would suspend its unlicensed service UberPOP in Oslo until Norway introduces new rules, as the U.S. ride-hailing app adopts a more conciliatory tone with national authorities.

Qualcomm offers EU concessions over $38 billion NXP takeover bid

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - U.S. smartphone chipmaker Qualcomm has offered concessions in an attempt to allay EU antitrust concerns over its $38-billion bid for NXP Semiconductors, the largest ever in the semiconductor industry.

GE names Trian co-founder Ed Garden to board

(Reuters) - U.S. industrial conglomerate General Electric Co said on Monday it had elected Ed Garden, the founding partner and chief investment officer of activist investment firm Trian Fund Management, to its board of directors.

Spanish Bonds, Stocks Bounce As Officials Say "Door Open" For Dialogue

Mimiccing last week's "stall" pump-n-dump, Spanish stock and bond markets are bid this morning following reports that a senior member of the Catalan regional government called for dialogue with Spain, saying that all of Europe faces economic damage unless a resolution is found.

As Bloomberg reports, after a weekend of mass demonstrations in favor of Spanish unity, Raul Romeva, foreign affairs chief for the separatist government in Barcelona, insisted that the door was open for talks if Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy was willing to engage.

"We need two to tango, we need the other side to be at the table," Romeva said in an interview in Barcelona on Sunday.

"We're always going to be at the negotiation table, but to start negotiations we need the other party to negotiate with."

Of course, after Rajoy threatened the 'nuclear option' over the weekend, we suspect talks are the last thing on his Franco-ian mind, but for now markets are impressed with 2Y yields tumbling...

Turkey Issues Arrest Warrant For Second US Consulate Worker, Lira Plunge Accelerates

One day after an escalating diplomatic spat, in which both the US and Turkey halted the issuance of non-immigrant visas to each other's citizens following last week's arrest by Turkey of a US consulate worker, on Monday Turkey issued another detention warrant for a second US consulate employee, Ahaber newspaper reports.

The market reaction to the rising diplomatic tensions has been dramatic, sending the Turkish lira crashing the most since the July 2016 failed "coup" attempt on Turkey's president Erdogan, while local stocks and bonds tumbled in sympathy, the local Borsa Istanbul 100 index sliding, and now in correction territory having dropped more than 10% from its late August peak. The news of the second arrest have led to some further weakness in the Lira this morning, which crashed to a record low against a basket of currencies including the euro and the dollar.

Turkish NTV broadcaster reported that the consulate worker is still being sought by security officials, while his wife and child are being questioned by Turkish police. The reason for the arrest warrant has not yet been revealed. The warrant follows the arrest of Metin Topuz, who as we reported last week, was a Turkish citizen who worked at the US general consulate in Istanbul. He is alleged to have ties to exiled Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Ankara blames for a failed coup attempt last summer and literally everything else that is wrong with Turkey.

The US Embassy in Turkey said that it was "deeply" disturbed over the "baseless, anonymous allegations" undermining "this longstanding partnership" between NATO allies. In its turn, Ankara said that the employee of the US Consulate General in Istanbul arrested by ...

Moscow Warns It May "Restrict" U.S. Media Operations In Russia

With relations between the US and Russia souring to the point where media outlets such as RT and Sputnik appear on the path to being effectively banned, the Russian foreign ministry said that it is within Russia's rights to restrict the operations of U.S. media organizations in Russia in retaliation for what Moscow calls U.S. pressure on a Kremlin-backed TV station.

According to Reuters, Russian officials have accused Washington of putting unwarranted pressure on the U.S. operations of RT, a Kremlin-funded broadcaster accused by some in Washington of interfering in domestic U.S. politics, which it denies. Foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said the full weight of the U.S. authorities was being brought to bear against RT's operations in the United States, and that Moscow had the right to respond.

"We have never used Russian law in relation to foreign correspondents as a lever of pressure, or censorship, or some kind of political influence, never," Zakharova said in an interview with Russia's NTV broadcaster. "But this is a particular case..."

She cited a 1991 Russian law which, she said, stated that if a Russian media outlet is subject to restrictions in a foreign country, then Moscow has the right to impose proportionate restrictions on media outlets from that country operating inside Russia. "Correspondingly, everything that Russian journalists and the RT station are subject to on U.S. soil, after we qualified it as restriction of their activities, we can apply similar measures to American journalists, American media here, on Russian territory," Zakharova said.

She did not identify any specific U.S. media outlets that would be targeted. She said it made no difference from the Russian government's point of view if those outlets were backed by the U.S. state, or privately-funded.

Late last month, Russia's state communications regulat ...

Frontrunning: October 9

Thaler, Famed for 'Nudge' Theory, Wins Nobel Prize in Economics (BBG)

Republicans Worry About Keeping Trump's Middle-Class Tax Promise (BBG)

Catalan leader under pressure to drop independence (Reuters)

Spain Warns Catalonia Independence Bid Risks Economic Meltdown (BBG)

U.S. Asks Allies to Cut Off North Korea (WSJ)

"In 2004, I was the reporter at NY Times asked to look into allegations of sexual misconduct by Weinstein" (The Wrap)

Merkel's Bloc Agrees to Limit Number of Refugees Entering Germany (WSJ)

Wall Street Firms Gambled on Puerto Rico. They're Losing (NYT)

ECB still concerned about existing stock of bank bad loans: Mersch (Reuters)

U.S., Turkey Halt Visitor Visas Amid Diplomatic Spat; Lira Tumbles (

Why Deutsche Bank Should Keep John Cryan

Deutsche Bank still has a long journey to good returns and it won't get there quicker by changing its chief executive.

Why Big Tech Is Tuning In to Speakers

The world's largest tech companies are pumping up the volume on home speakers. They have good reason to.

ECB May Choose a Long, Slow Goodbye to Extraordinary Stimulus

The ECB's October date with destiny is looming. Investors are wondering by how much the central bank's monthly bond purchases will be scaled back. But how long purchases run matters as much as how big they are.

The Moneyologist: My wife transferred $130,000 from our joint bank account into a CD in her name only

What's his is theirs — and the rest belongs to his wife.

Dove apologizes after video clip on Facebook is labeled 'racist'

The beauty company misjudged yet another 'body positive' advertisement.

Wal-Mart strikes back at Amazon voice-commerce push with Google partnership

Wal-Mart is moving quickly with its Google partnership, which could beat back the growing dominance of Amazon in voice commerce

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