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Futures Decline Amid Global Growth Concerns

CNBC.com
Monday, 8 Oct 2012 | 8:47 AM ET

U.S. stock index futures were lower Monday after the World Bank cut its estimate for East Asian growth, including China.

The World Bank reduced its growth forecasts for the East Asia and Pacific region and said there was a risk the slowdown in China could worsen and last longer than many analysts have forecast.

There are no economic reports scheduled for release and the bond market is closed in observance of the Columbus Day holiday. Trading volume is also likely to be thin.

Stocks rallied on Friday to finish higher for the week after new figures showed the unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent in September, the first time it dipped below 8 percent in nearly four years. The Dow finished at its best level since December 2007.

Euro zone finance ministers meet in Luxembourg and investors will be closely watching for any clues on whether Spain is any closer to formally requesting a bailout. The European Stability Mechanism (ESM), Europe’s permanent rescue mechanism, enters into force on Monday. Spain is widely expected to be the first country to seek help from the fund.

Concerns about a next tranche of aid for Greece could also add to investors’ nerves.

Wal-Mart and American Express announced that they will introduce a reloadable prepaid card for shoppers.

Central Bankers Put 'Beer Goggles' on Investors: Market Pro
Peter Boockvar, Miller Tabak + Co., is not convinced the bulls are here to stay. "My concern is earnings," he says. "Central bankers have had this amazing ability to put beer goggles on investors." Meanwhile Jeff Rosenberg, BlackRock CIO, says markets have run-up too fast in the short-run given continued global economic uncertainty.

UnitedHealth said it would acquire a 90-percent stake in Brazil's Amil Participacoes in a deal worth nearly $4.9 billion to gain exposure to the country's fast-growing private health-care market.

Third-quarter earnings season kicks off Tuesday with results from Dow component Alcoa after the closing bell. Analysts expect the aluminum producer to post a break-even quarter, down from reporting earnings of 15 cents a share a year ago, according to data from Thomson Reuters.

Recent earnings warnings from large multinationals such as FedEx, Caterpillar and Hewlett-Packard have made investors cautious about corporate profits.

By CNBC’s JeeYeon Park (Follow JeeYeon on Twitter: @JeeYeonParkCNBC)

Coming Up This Week:

TUESDAY: NFIB small biz index, 3-yr note auction, FedEx investors mtg, P&G shareholers mtg; Earnings from Alcoa, Yum Brands
WEDNESDAY: Weekly mortgage apps, wholesale trade, 10-yr note auction, Beige Book, Treasury budget, Wal-Mart investors mtg; Earnings from Costco
THURSDAY: International trade, jobless claims, import/export prices, oil inventories, 30-yr bond auction
FRIDAY: PPI, consumer sentiment, GM resumes Volt production; Earnings from JPMorgan, Wells Fargo

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