Good morning. Here's what you need to know.
- Asian markets were down in overnight trading, with the Nikkei and the Hang Seng falling 0.9 percent. European markets are lower across the board, with Spain down 1.1 percent. Dow futures are down 37 points ahead of the U.S. trading session and S&P 500 futures are off 2.5 points.
- China CPI inflation fell to a 33-month low in October, rising 1.7 percent year-over-year but falling 0.1 percent from September. Retail sales rose just ahead of expectations, posting 14.5 percent gains from a year ago.
- Germany CPI came right in line with expectations, rising 2.1 percent from a year ago. France posted disappointing industrial production numbers, which showed a contraction of 2.5 percent from a year ago versus estimates of a mere 0.1 percent decline.
- Battle lines are being drawn over the fiscal cliff in the wake of the presidential election, and both President Obama and House Speaker Boehner will hold press conferences today to address the issue. Meanwhile, there is a growing voice advocating for the president not to make a deal.
- Europe's largest insurer Allianz reported soaring earnings today on strength from its asset management and insurance businesses and favorable comparisons to a rough Q3 2011. Credit Agricole posted a wider loss than was forecasted after taking a bigger hit on the divestiture of a Greek subsidiary than expected.
- Groupon stock fell to all-time lows in after hours trading after reporting worse than expected earnings yesterday after the bell. Disney stock is down in the after hours/pre-market session after that company also missed earnings estimates.
- U.S. retailer JC Penney reported a loss of $0.93 per share, missing consensus estimates of an $0.11 loss. CEO Ron Johnson said in the release that JCP is " really a tale of two companies. By far the largest part of our store is the old jcpenney, which continues to struggle and experience significant challenges as evidenced by our third quarter results."
- The Reserve Bank of Australia trimmed its growth forecasts for the country in a new quarterly outlook released Friday to 3.0 percent from a previous range of 3.0-3.5 percent. The central bank cited a reluctance on the part of mining companies to continue investment.
- Japan looks set to avoid its own fiscal cliff in the coming days. Citi strategists write that party leaders have "agreed in principle to pass the bill in the Lower House on November 15 and in the Upper House on November 19, and that "while there still remains some uncertainty over negotiations, we expect the bill’s approval around November 20."
- The University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index surged to its highest level in five years this morning, beating consensus estimates. The index rose to 84.9 from 82.6 last month, and economists had only expected a reading of 83.0 this month.
- BONUS: Erin Heatherton opens up about her breakup with Leonardo DiCaprio.
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