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Wall Street Set to Stage Strong Rebound

U.S. stock index futures pointed to a strong rebound Monday after Wall Street recorded its biggest losses since the end of October on Friday.

Last week, the Dow chalked up its worst weekly percentage loss since March 2009. Futures earlier indicated a gain of about 1 percent at the open but have since retreated a bit.

There are growing doubts about the confirmation of Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke to a second term. However, CNBC reported over the weekend that Bernanke likely has enough votes to overcome a filibuster and gain approval for a second term.

Financial stocks were prepared to lead a market rebound. The SPDR Financial ETF gained nearly 1 percent in premarket trading, mirroring the broader market's gain as investors could look for bargains in the sector.

Earnings were again a mixed bag.

Halliburton posted a 7 percent drop in quarterly profit, sending the oilfield services company's shares down 1.5 percent premarket. Diversified manufacturer Eaton reported profit higher than expected, sending its shares up 4 percent.

The most notable economic report of the day comes at 10 am New York time, when the National Association of Realtors is out with existing home sales for December. Economists predict that sales fell 11.6 percent in December, compared to a 7.4 percent rise in November.

Stocks to watch this morning include Cadbury , which will not be getting a bid from Italy's Ferrero, clearing the way for the takeover deal by Kraft Foods to go through.

Wal-Mart is on the watch list as well, as it announces it's cutting 10 percent of the workforce, about 11,200 jobs, at its Sam's Club unit. Shares gained about 1 percent premarket.

Also among the earnings scheduled for this morning: AK Steel and Quest Diagnostics.

The more notable reports come after the closing bell this afternoon, when the latest quarterly numbers come from Apple , Amgen , and Texas Instruments .

Also in the news today: a new survey from the National Association For Business Economics shows U.S. companies slowly increasing hiring plans for the first half of 2010.

The Lundberg survey says the average price of a gallon of gasoline slipped 1.42 cents over the past two weeks to $2.72 per gallon.

Winterizing Your Portfolio - A CNBC Special Report
Winterizing Your Portfolio - A CNBC Special Report

Creditors have taken over two huge New York City apartment complexes — Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village — that had been sold to Tishman Speyer and BlackRock Realty several years ago for a record $5.4 billion.

And "Avatar" is about to become the highest grossing movie ever, just a month or so after being released. It's just $2 million shy of the record set in 1997 by "Titanic". Both movies were directed by James Cameron.

- Written by Peter Schacknow, Senior Producer, CNBC Breaking News Desk.

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