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Futures lower as government shutdown drags on


Stock index futures are pointing to a lower open this morning, as the government shutdown continues into seventh day. The markets struggled last week as investors tried to weather the storm, but the Nasdaq Composite did manage its fifth consecutive week of gains.


The economic calendar will be lighter than usual this week, with many scheduled reports being withheld due to the shutdown. We may or may not get August consumer credit figures at 3pm E.T. today. If we do, economists are looking for a $13.5 billion increase compared to a $10.4 billion gain in July.


The earnings calendar is also blank today, although earnings season will kick off in earnest later this week with the Friday release of quarterly numbers from JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Wells Fargo (WFC).


Boeing (BA) is a stock to watch today, as Japan Airlines makes its first-ever purchase from Boeing rival Airbus. JAL bought 31 A350 models worth a total of $9.5 billion at list prices.


BlackBerry (BBRY) is reportedly in talks to sell parts of itself to Google (GOOG), Cisco (CSCO), and SAP (SAP), according to Reuters. This possibility has emerged as an alternative to a planned buyout by major BlackBerry shareholder Fairfax Financial, amid doubts about financing for the deal.


Apollo Global Management (APO) may seek permission to raise the investment limit on its new flagship fund, according to Bloomberg. The limit is currently $15 billion, but the firm is said to have received interest amounting to as much as $20 billion.


Cooper Tire (CTB) is in a dispute with India's Apollo Tyres, the company that's agreed to buy it for $2.5 billion. Labor issues are at the center of the disagreement, with Apollo saying it may have to bear "significant and unanticipated" costs and that a price reduction is warranted.


United Technologies (UTX) unit Sikorsky Aircraft has canceled temporary layoffs that had been scheduled to go into effect today because of the government shutdown. That follows the Defense Department's move to recall furloughed workers.


Outerwall (OUTR) has drawn the interest of Jana Partners, which has taken a 13. 5 percent stake in the Redbox parent.


Apple's (AAPL) iPhone 5C is seeing more discounting, with Wal-Mart (WMT) and RadioShack (RSH) the latest to cut prices on the less expensive of Apple's two new iPhone offerings.