Following a pretty sluggish November (major U.S. indices were flat for the month despite volatile swings), traders are determining where the markets will go to close out the year. Major events this week, including a crucial ECB meeting, speeches from Janet Yellen, OPEC's conference in Vienna and the November jobs report, will likely give clues about that direction. More than a half-dozen Fed officials are also scheduled to speak over the next few days, which may provide further hints about upcoming U.S. monetary policy. (SA)
The long-running Puerto Rican debt saga may reach a turning point today as the commonwealth must choose between paying investors $354 million in principal and interest, or keeping the cash for government services. Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla will appear before a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee today amid a continued lack of any consensus on how to help his administration. (Bloomberg)
Fiat Chrysler on Tuesday said it logged its best US November sales in a decade-and-half as the domestic auto industry shows little sign of slowing. The company's Jeep brand, long an engine of growth for Chrysler, posted its best November ever, with sales jumping 20 per cent. Chrysler said its sales got a lift from a combination of "low interest rates, oil prices and unemployment." (FT)
Despite trying to avoid holiday crowds at bricks-and-mortar stores, U.S. shoppers came face-to-face with traffic jams and product sellouts on Cyber Monday, with some customers of Target forced to wait in a virtual line. Website outages and slow checkouts during the five-day shopping spree were also reported at Neiman Marcus, Wal-Mart, Victoria's Secret, Foot Locker, and at payments processor PayPal. Sales on Cyber Monday were expected to finish up 12% from a year earlier at just under $3bn.