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What to watch today: keep an eye on global commodity prices in today's trading session, as global oil, gold, and silver prices are all rising. In addition, markets could see a boost on rumors that the Chinese central bank is considering another interest rate cut in order to spur economic growth. Meanwhile, U.S. investors will keep a close eye on what's happening in Congress this week. According to reports, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner is working with party leaders to devise a spending bill that would avoid a government shutdown.
Here's what else you should know about the stock market today – including your "Money Morning Tip of the Day" – to make it a profitable Tuesday:
- Cyber Frenzy: Yesterday's online shopping holiday offered a big boost to retailers. Sales increased 8.7% from 2013, according to IBM Digital Analytics. Shares of e-commerce giant Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) were on the rise this morning on news that the company processed a new record for orders on Cyber Monday. The company reported more than 1.5 billion views on its homepage over the five shopping days from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday.
- Apple Slides: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) slumped as much as 6.4% in a single minute on Monday in what looks like a mini-flash crash. Here's a full breakdown of one of today's craziest moments in the markets. AAPL stock is down again this morning ahead of opening arguments of a decade-old antitrust lawsuit against the company over its iTunes digital music services.
- The Rich Get Richer: The world's largest ride-sharing program, Uber, is now receiving financing that values it at $40 billion. The company has continued to hold off on an IPO, so you still can't invest in it directly right now. However, some high-net worth investors with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) will receive the opportunity through a private placement deal, according to Fortune. Goldman's investors also received a chance to invest in Facebook in 2011, well ahead of the company's historic initial public offering.
- Merger Mania: Shares of Avanir Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: AVNR) soared more than 13% in pre-market hours on news it will be purchased by Japanese drug manufacturer Otsuka Pharmaceutical. The deal is worth roughly $3.5 billion. Meanwhile, Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (Nasdaq: CY) announced it will purchase Spansion Inc. (NYSE: CODE), a manufacturer of flash memory devices. That will be a $1.59 billion all-stock deal. Shares of Spansion jumped nearly 18% in pre-market hours.
- Oil Prices Today: Oil prices have steadied after slipping recently to five-year lows. January futures for U.S. crude hovered to a price near $68.55 per barrel. Meanwhile, Brent crude was back above $72 per barrel. Oil prices remain subdued after OPEC decided to maintain production levels despite rising global supplies and concerns about weakening demand.
- Economic Calendar: Today's economic calendar features speeches from two Federal Reserve members, the weekly ICSC-Goldman Store Sales report, and an update on construction spending.
- Earnings Reports: Stay tuned for earnings reports from Bank of Montreal (NYSE: BMO), GW Pharmaceuticals Plc. (Nasdaq ADR: GWPH), Star Bulk Carriers Corp. (Nasdaq: SBLK), and Isle of Capri Casinos Inc. (Nasdaq: ISLE).
Full U.S. Economic Calendar Dec. 2, 2014
- ICSC-Goldman Store Sales at 7:45 a.m.
- Federal Reserve Vice Chair Stanley Fischer speaks at 8:15 a.m.
- Gallup US ECI at 8:30 a.m.
- Redbook at 8:55 a.m.
- Construction Spending at 10 a.m.
- 4-Week Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
- Federal Reserve Gov. Lael Brainard speaks at 12 p.m.