Market Levels

* US: Dow Futures: 13454.00 (-0.34%), S&P 500 Futures: 1446.00 (-0.41%), NASDAQ Futures: 2835.50 (-0.60%)

* Europe: CAC: 3489.85 (-1.16%), DAX: 7394.88 (-0.77%), FTSE: 5820.59 (-0.55%).

* Asia-Pacific: Australia: 4385.50 (-0.52%), China: 2033.19 (0.32%), Hong Kong: 20694.70 (-0.19%), India: 5669.60 (-0.38%), Japan: 9069.29 (-0.45%).

* Metals: Gold: 1783.50 (0.75%), Silver: 35.03 (1.00%), Copper: 3.79 (0.90%)

* Energy: Crude Oil: 93.68 (1.36%), Natural Gas: 2.83 (1.07%)

* Commodities: Corn: 7.48 (-1.35%), Soya Bean: 16.21 (-3.03%), Wheat: 8.89 (-0.06%)

* Currency: EUR/USD: 1.3028 (0.46%), GBP/USD: 1.6284 (0.43%), USD/JPY: 78.2100 (-0.04%)

* 10 year US Treasury: 1.787% (0.021)

Financial and Economic News Update

U.S. stock-index futures decline: U.S. stock-index futures are pointing to a lower open on Monday as weak data from China and Germany added to market concerns about sagging global growth. The Dow Jones industrial average, the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ were all trading close to half a percent lower.

European markets trading in the red: European markets are down in trade today after the German IFO index, a gauge of business confidence, fell for the fifth straight month in September. The German DAX (INDEXDB:DAX) is trading 0.8 percent lower at 7394.88, the FTSE 100 (INDEXFTSE:UKX) fell 0.6 percent to 5820.59 and the CAC 40 (INDEXEURO:PX1) slumped 1.2 percent to 3489.85. The euro zone blue-chip ESTX 50 PR.EUR (INDEXSTOXX:SX5E) (Euro Stoxx 50) was trading 1.1 percent lower.

Asian markets end mostly lower: Asian markets closed lower on Monday amid investor concern that talks to resolve the euro zone debt crisis are deadlocked. Japan’s NIKKEI 225 (INDEXNIKKEI:NI225) fell to a one-week closing low at 9069.29 points. The HANG SENG INDEX (INDEXHANGSENG:HIS) fell 0.2 percent to close at 20,694.7 points, while the SSE Composite Index (SHA:000001) (Shanghai Composite Index) rose 0.4 percent. The S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) index fell 22.8 points to close at 4,385.5. The benchmark Indian 30-share BSE SENSITIVE (INDEXBOM:SENSEX) index closed 0.41 percent lower.

Company News Update

U.S.

* Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) said it sold 5 million iPhones in the three days following its launch.

* Lennar Corporation (NYSE:LEN), the country’s third largest home-builder, reported third quarter profit of $87.1 million, or 40 cents a share, up from $20.7 million, or 11 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Revenue for the quarter increased 34 percent to $1.1 billion from $820.2 million a year earlier. Analysts had forecast earnings of 28 cents on revenue of $1.05 billion. New orders jumped 44 percent to 4,198 homes.

* Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) slumped 5 percent in pre-open trading after Barron’s said its analysis found the shares worth $15.

* General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) is down close to a percent in early morning trade after it announced plans to buy more mining-equipment and services companies to create a new mining unit.

* Casino operator Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS) should be broken up into three companies to boost its stock-market value, Connecticut-based shareholder, Land & Buildings Investment Management LLC, recommended.

* Kellogg Company (NYSE:K) has entered into a partnership with Singapore-based palm oil producer Wilmar International Limited (SGX:F34) to manufacture and sell cereal and other snacks in China.

* Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS) has reached an agreement with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to pay about $200 million to cardholders who bought certain credit-protection products.

* TiVo Inc. (NASDAQ:TIVO) said Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) will pay $250.4 million to settle a patent dispute between the two companies. The two companies have also agreed to enter into a mutual patent licensing arrangement.

* Questcor Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOR) tanked 25 percent in pre-market trading after disclosing that the U.S. government is investigating its marketing practices.

* Coinstar, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSTR)’s Redbox and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) plan to launch a video streaming service by Christmas, Bloomberg reported.

* Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) fell 1 percent after analysts at JPMorgan Chase downgraded the stock to “neutral” from “overweight.”

* Time Warner Cable Inc (NYSE:TWC) was upgraded to “overweight” from “equal weight” by analysts at Morgan Stanley with a target price of $110.

* United States Steel Corporation (NYSE:X) was lowered to “neutral” from “buy,” and AK Steel Holding Corporation (NYSE:AKS) was cut to “sell” from “neutral” by analysts at Citigroup.

Europe

* British defense contractor BAE Systems plc (LON:BA) and Airbus parent EADS NV (EPA:EAD) are expected to ask for an extension to the October 10 deadline set by the Takeover Panel to agree to terms of the 28 billion pound ($45 billion) merger, according to a report in The Daily Telegraph newspaper.

* Dutch engineering company Fugro N.V. (AMS:FUR) has agreed to sell its seismic data division to French oil services group CGG Veritas (ADR) (NYSE:CGV) (EPA:GA) for 1.2 billion euros ($1.6 billion) in cash.

* French bank Credit Agricole SA (EPA:ACA) is down 2.5 percent after the Wall Street Journal reported that the lender will probably need to inject 600 to 700 million euros into its Greek Emporiki unit before selling it.

* Boston-based buyout firm Advent International Corp. will make a 775 million euro ($1.01 billion) cash offer for Dutch pharmacy chain Mediq NV (AMS:MEDIQ), the companies said in a statement today.

* French oil company Total S.A. (ADR) (NYSE:TOT) (EPA:FP) raised its annual average production growth target to 3 percent for the period 2011-2015, and said it is planning to sell as much as $20 billion in assets to raise cash for oil and gas projects.

* Dutch logistics group TNT Express NV (AMS:TNTE) said chief executive, Marie-Christine Lombard has resigned. CFO Bernard Bot will temporarily replace her.

* London-listed mining group Bumi PLC (LON:BUMI) plunged 25 percent after Reuters reported that it has started an investigation into potential financial irregularities at its Indonesian operations.

* Trading of shares in struggling U.K. retailer JJB Sports plc (LON:JJB) were suspended on Monday after it said it had appointed administrators to undertake a potential sale of its assets.

* Anglo American plc (LON:AAL) slid 3.5 percent in London after Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc. both downgraded the stock to “neutral” from “buy.” Rio Tinto plc (ADR) (NYSE:RIO) (LON:RIO) (ASX:RIO) lost 2.2 percent after Citigroup lowered the world’s third-largest mining company to “neutral” from “buy.” Antofagasta plc (LON:ANTO) slid 2.4 percent and Kazakhmys plc (LON:KAZ) traded 3 percent lower.

* Commerzbank AG (ETR:CBK) (FRA:CBK), Germany’s second-largest lender, fell 4.7 percent after analysts at Nomura Holdings Inc. cut the stock to “reduce” from “neutral.”

Asia-Pacific

* Taiwan’s Foxconn Technology Group, the parent of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s supplier Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. (TPE:2317), closed its Taiyuan plant in northern China on Monday after a personal dispute escalated into larger-scale unrest, leaving 40 injured.

* Struggling chipmaker Renesas Electronics Corporation (TYO:6723) soared 31 percent amid reports that a Japanese government fund, along with Toyota Motor Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:TM) (TYO:7203) and Panasonic Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:PC) (TYO:6752), is considering a bailout of the company, countering a 100 billion yen ($1.3 billion) bid by U.S. private equity firm KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR).

* Nintendo Co., Ltd (TYO:7974) ended 0.7 percent lower in Tokyo despite reports that its new Wii U console is close to selling out ahead of its November 18 launch in the U.S.

* Swiss bank Credit Suisse Group AG (ADR) (NYSE:CS) has trimmed its investment banking team in Dubai as part of cost-cutting plans announced last year, Bloomberg reported.

* Sovereign-wealth fund Qatar Holding LLC is in advanced talks to buy a 49-percent stake in Brazilian gold company AUX for about $2 billion, according to a Reuters report.

* Australian gold miner, Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX:NCM) closed 2.6 percent lower after analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded the stock to “neutral” from “overweight.”

* Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE:YUM) said it will close all of its KFC restaurants in Pakistan in the aftermath of an attack upon one of the outlets in Lebanon during an anti-American protest last week.

* Japanese resin maker, Sumitomo Bakelite Company Limited (TYO:4203), plunged 5.7 percent in Tokyo after slashing its first-half net income forecast by 30 percent.

* Carlyle Group LP (NASDAQ:CG)-owned Japanese ball-bearing maker, Tsubaki Nakashima Co., Ltd. has called off a planned initial public offering, citing turbulent market conditions, according to a Reuters report.

* Visual effects company Digital Domain Media Group Inc (PINK:DDMGQ), which filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this month, has been jointly acquired by Chinese media company, Beijing Galloping Horse Film & TV Co. and Mumbai-based Reliance Mediaworks Ltd (NSE:RELMEDIA) (BOM:532399), for $30.2 million.

Economic Calendar for Monday, September 24, 2012:

08:30 A.M. ET: Chicago Fed National Activity Index (August)

10:30 A.M. ET: Dallas Fed Manufacturing Business Index (September)

11:00 A.M. ET: 4-Week Bill Announcement

11:30 A.M. ET: 3-Month Bill Auction

11:30 A.M. ET: 6-Month Bill Auction

03:10 P.M. ET: San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank Pres. John Williams speaks.