Futures nudge lower as debt ceiling worries weigh
Budget talks will continue this week with the aim of passing a resolution to fund government beyond October 1. On Friday, Republicans passed a bill that would fund the government until December 15, but would defund Obamacare. However, the bill looks unlikely to pass through the Democrat-controlled Senate.
Budget talks will continue this week with the aim of passing a resolution to fund government beyond October 1. On Friday, Republicans passed a bill that would fund the government until December 15, but would defund Obamacare.
Daiwa Capital Market's Michael Moran warned that acrimonious debate could shake consumers and businesses' resurgent confidence and lead to a reduction in spending plans.
"This seemed to occur in 2011, when GDP in Q3 advanced only 1.4 percent in the wake of the heated debate over the debt ceiling… Discord could easily arise in the upcoming debate, as some legislators are attempting to use the new legislation to defund the Affordable Care Act, obviously a sensitive issue and a risky strategy," he said in a report.
Apple spiked higher after the tech giant announced that sales for its new iPhone had set a record, with consumers snapping up a record 9 million smartphones within the first few days of its launch. In addition, the company said there were more than 200 million downloads of its new iOS 7 platform.
Meanwhile, Microsoft is expected to introduce its next-generation tablets at an event in New York City. The company is also rumored to be preparing to unveil some accessories, including a docking station and a tablet cover (called the "Power Cover") that both charge the device and act as a keyboard.
The Fed will remain in focus this week with several speakers scheduled, including three on Monday. These are Dennis Lockhart at 9:20 a.m. ET, William Dudley at 9:30 a.m. and Richard Fisher at 1:30 p.m. Dudley is viewed as closely aligned to Chairman Ben Bernanke and Vice Chair Janet Yellen, who is expected to succeed Bernanke.
In Europe, shares traded narrowly lower on Monday, with the exception of the French stocks, which were boosted after flash composite PMI (purchasing managers' index) data for September came in above 50 for the first time in 19 months. A reading above 50 indicates economic expansion.
(Read More: French, German private sectors power ahead)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel performed better-than-expected in Sunday's national elections, meaning she is almost certainly guaranteed a third term. However, she is likely to opt to form a new "grand" coalition with the center-left Social Democratic Party.
"Angela Merkel won a resounding endorsement of her policies from the German voters, with the highest share of votes for the CDU since 1990, but she didn't win enough to avoid a painful period of coalition-building and uncertainty," said Societe Generale's Kit Juckes in a morning note.
"The outcome leaves markets somewhat in limbo, despite positive headlines helping the euro (hurting the dollar), and supporting both risk assets and peripheral European bonds," he added.
In Asia, shares were mixed on Monday as investors digested better-than-expected Chinese factory activity data. However, trading volumes were thin, with Japanese markets shut for a public holiday.
HSBC's flash manufacturing PMI of small and medium-sized firms in China hit a six-month high of 51.2 in September, higher than August's reading of 50.1, thanks to stronger domestic and foreign demand.