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Wall Street slammed after China halts trading

IN THE NEWS TODAY

U.S. futures and European stocks tanked today, after Chinese equities plunged 7 percent overnight, triggering a trading session halt. Spurring the sell-off, factory activity in China contracted for the 10th straight month in December. (CNBC)

Wall Street was on track to start off the new year sharply lower, after the Dow broke a six-year winning streak in 2015. The S&P 500 snapped a three-year winning streak. The Nasdaq, however, posted its fourth straight positive year. (CNBC)

Oil prices were slightly higher this morning, after Saudi Arabia cut ties with Iran. UAE and Bahrain followed suit. The moves were in response to the storming of the Saudi embassy in Tehran, escalating tensions over Riyadh's execution of a Shiite Muslim cleric. (CNBC & Reuters)

Oil prices could break below $20 per barrel this year as tensions simmer between Iran and Saudi Arabia, two of the world's largest crude players, Again Capital founding partner John Kilduff told CNBC.

American Express (AXP) and Bank of America (BAC) were dropped after 12 years by Fidelity as credit card partners, in favor of U.S. Bancorp (USB) and Visa (V), effective today. (Reuters)

Tesla (TSLA) was under pressure in premarket trading, after the electric automaker met its lowered forecasts by delivering 17,400 vehicles during the fourth quarter and 50,580 for 2015. (Reuters)

Newly obtained internal Takata emails suggest that manipulation of airbag testing data was bold and broad, involving open exchanges among employees in Japan and the U.S. (NY Times)

The New York State attorney general wants the two largest daily fantasy sports companies, FanDuel and DraftKings, to give back the hundreds of millions they made in the state. (NY Times)

A deadly earthquake measuring 6.8 struck in a remote northeast region of India near the Myanmar border before dawn on Monday. (Reuters)

Dairy farmers in Texas and New Mexico predicted that consumers should expect a milk shortage, after a freak blizzard killed more than 30,000 dairy cows last week. (Christian Science Monitor)

President Barack Obama plans to meet with the attorney general today to talk about options for regulating guns. But any executive action would likely to be undone if a Republican wins the White House. (USA Today)

Following attacks over his sexual history from GOP front-runner Donald Trump, Bill Clinton is escalating his public involvement in the presidential campaign of his wife, Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton. (AP)

Nearly half of Americans are angry, and no groups are angrier than whites and Republicans, according to a new NBC News/Survey Monkey/Esquire online pollabout outrage in the country.

Rejecting concerns about rogue artificial intelligence as "far-fetched," Facebook (FB) chief Mark Zuckerberg plans to spend the next year building his own personal AI assistant. (FT)

BY THE NUMBERS

The first two economic reports of the new year come at 10 a.m. ET, with the latest ISM manufacturing index and government construction spending numbers. There are no earnings reports out today, either this morning or after the closing bell.

Ferrari (RACE) is following up its successful Wall Street listing with a stock market launch in Milan, as the sports carmaker begins a new era free of its former parent company, Fiat Chrysler (FCAU).

Las Vegas Sands (LVS), Wynn Resorts (WYNN) are among the stocks that could be impacted by the latest gaming figures from Macau, which show gambling revenue down 34.3 percent in the Chinese territory for 2015.


STOCKS TO WATCH

EMC (EMC) has approved an unspecified number of job cuts as the data storage company brings in a plan to trim expenses by $850 million. The move comes as EMC prepares to be taken private by computer maker Dell.

Finland's Nokia (NOK) received final approvals for its $17 billion takeover of French rival Alcatel-Lucent, saying it'll begin operating on a combined basis on Jan. 14.

Yahoo (YHOO) shareholders are losing patience with CEO Marissa Meyer, according to the New York Post. The paper reported that activist shareholder Starboard Value plans to nominate a new board.

Pandora (P) got a negative mention in Barron's, which reported the online radio service faces increased competition from the likes of Apple (AAPL), Spotify, Amazon (AMZN), Microsoft (MSFT), and Alphabet (GOOGL).

WATERCOOLER

Walt Disney's (DIS) "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" topped ticket sales once again, putting the reboot on pace to break the all-time domestic box office record held by "Avatar" in the coming week. (Variety)

The next project of Julian Fellowes, creator of "Downton Abbey," will be a serialized novel, taking place in 1840s London. It'll be released digitally for $1.99 per chapter, or $13.99 all together. (NY Times)