LONDON -- The Dow Jones Industrial Average
Markets are now waiting for the next round of key decisions. On Wednesday, a German court will rule on the legality of the proposed European bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism. A negative verdict could heavily impact the stability of the single currency, while on Thursday, the Federal Reserve may announce further stimulus measures after its monthly meeting.
In the meantime, disappointing Chinese data may dampen markets' enthusiasm; new data overnight showed that imports fell by 2.6% in August, missing an expected 3.5% increase. China's exports were also disappointing, growing by just 2.7% compared with a 3% gain forecast by a Reuters poll. Closer to home, July's consumer credit figures are due to be published at 3 p.m. EDT and are expected to show an increase to $7 billion from $6.5 billion in June.
Companies that may feature heavily in trading today include AIG, following the U.S. Treasury's announcement that it intends to sell as much as $18 billion of shares in the company, reducing taxpayers' stake in the firm to less than 50%. Clothing firm Michael Kors could be active after announcing a secondary offering on Friday. Companies releasing results today include Casey's General Stores and Five Below.
European markets have been quiet this morning, after last week's strong gains. At 7am, the DAX was up 0.1%, the CAC was down 0.1%, the FTSE MIB was down 0.4% and the IBEX was down 0.5%.
In London, mining shares rose strongly, led by Fresnillo, which gained 4%. However, the FTSE 100
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Roland Head has no shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of American International Group. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.