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3 Things you need to know before Trading Today

Stocks had mixed results overnight. The Hang Seng gained two thirds of a percent and Australia added a quarter percent but the Nikkei was a fraction lower and Shanghai lost a half percent. European indexes however are broadly higher with the Footsie currently up 0.8% and the Dax better by 0.6%. US stock futures are up by about a half percent.
*The June reading of China’s Leading Economic Index fell to 102.84 from 103.25 the month before. This is the fourth monthly decline in a row for the index and it is now at the lowest level since June a year ago.

*The June reading of Germany’s Import Price Index was +0.9% on a month on month basis, three tenths more than forecast.

*UK retail sales rose at the fastest pace in three years in July according to a report from the Confederation of British Industry, which cites warmer weather, summer price cuts and the World Cup for the jump in sales.

*BP reports a Q2 net loss of $17.2 billion, they are taking a $32.2 billion pre-tax charge relating to the Gulf oil spill and they plan $30 billion of asset sales over the next 18 months. They also confirmed that Tony Hayward is going to be replaced as CEO by Robert Dudley.

*The weekly report on chain store sales from ICSC showed that sales were up 0.6% on a week over week basis for the week ended July 24. The Johnson Redbook report on the same thing is due out at 7:55am CDT.

*The May reading of the Case/Shiller Home Price Index is due out at 8:00am CDT, it is expected to be +3.85% on a year over year basis. The July reading of Consumer Confidence is due out at 9:00am CDT, it is forecast to fall a couple points on the month to 51.0.

*The July reading of the Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index is due out at 9:00am CDT; the estimate calls for the index to fall to 12 from 23 in June.

*The FHFA will release a report on Q2 housing vacancies at 9:00am CDT.

*The Treasury plans to sell $38 billion 2 Year Notes today, the results will be announced just after noon CDT.

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