Stocks are falling as the United States moves one day closer to
default with little sign of progress in Washington.
S&P 500 futures are down more than half a percent but have been
rebounding from their lows last night. European markets are also
posting small losses, while Asian markets were mixed in the
While deadlock began in the House, the acrimony spread to the
Senate over the weekend as Democrats pushed to end spending cuts
under so-called sequester rules. They also rejected a budget plan
by Republican Susan Collins, who often allies with Democrats.
The impasse makes it more difficult for politicians to raise the
U.S. debt limit with just four days until its borrowing capacity is
reached. Government agencies also remain closed after the Senate
and White House rejected budgets sent by the House earlier in the
The specter of default comes at a time of extremely bullish
sentiment, with the economy improving and investors eager to put
money into the stock market. The S&P 500 rallied sharply on
Thursday and Friday on hopes of a deal in Washington, ending the
week less than 2 percent below its all-time high from last month.
Conclusive debt and budget deals would likely drive the index to
new all-time highs.
Commodities and currencies are reflecting a modestly cautious tone.
The safe-haven Japanese yen is inching higher, along with gold and
silver. Oil is down almost 1 percent, though copper is up more than
half a percent. The euro and Australian dollar are also posting
Economic news from overseas was also mixed: China reported a
surprise drop in exports for September, but the Eurozone reported
better-than-expected industrial production for August. There are no
more items on the calendar for today, and most of this week's
agenda will focus on corporate earnings.
Tomorrow's heavyweights include Citigroup, Intel, and Yahoo. (See
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