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Monday Morning Business Brief

February 3, 2014, 5:46 AM

Monday Morning Business Brief

Concerns about soft company earnings, the global economy and turmoil in emerging markets still weigh on the minds of equity investors. Because of those worries, January turned out to be a bust for the market. The Dow Jones industrial average had its worst start since 2009. On Friday the Dow fell 150 points. The S&P 500 dropped 11 1/ 2 and the Nasdaq lost 19 points. Futures point to modest gains at this morning's opening.

  • International stock markets were mostly lower today as signs of weakness in another China manufacturing survey added to lingering jitters about developing economies. Benchmark U.S. crude oil fell below $97 a barrel. The dollar gained against the yen and was little changed against the euro.
  • The Institute for Supply Management will release January's manufacturing index today. And the government will report on construction spending for December. Also today, automakers will release vehicle sales for January. As the earnings season continues, restaurant operator Yum Brands will report quarterly financial results.
  • Super Bowl marketers played it cool this year. There were no crude jokes. Sexual innuendo was kept to a minimum. And uncomfortable scenes were missing. In short, there wasn't much shock value. Advertisers tried to keep it family friendly with socially conscious statements, patriotic messages and light humor.
  • "Ride Along" is still rolling at the box office, steering Universal Pictures into the No. 1 slot in a surprising three-week takeover. The buddy cop comedy, starring Kevin Hart and Ice Cube, made $12.3 million, as it nears a $100 million domestic total, according to studio estimates Sunday. Disney's "Frozen," now the fourth highest-grossing domestic animated release ever, is in second place with $9.3 million. "That Awkward Moment" holds down third place while "The Nut Job," also animated, opened in fourth. "Lone Survivor" rounded out the top five.

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