Here are five things you must know for Monday, Sept. 24:
1. -- Stocks Under Pressure, Oil Prices Surge
U.S. stock futures fell on Monday, Sept. 24, and global stocks were mostly weaker, while oil prices surged to a four-month high as investors reacted to sharply worded attacks on Donald Trump's trade and energy policies from leaders of the world's second-largest economy and the biggest oil producing cartel.
OPEC decided to make no changes to its output quotas at its weekend meeting in Algeria, with Saudi Arabia's energy minister insisting that the global oil market is "balanced" and that he "doesn't influence prices," a clear reference to Trump's tweet last week demanding the cartel "get prices down now!"
Iran's oil minister called the OPEC decision, which lifted Brent crude futures past $80 a barrel, "the biggest insult to Washington's allies in the Middle East." The minister suggested global producers were ready to deal with looming U.S. sanctions on the sale of Iranian crude.
West Texas Intermediate crude rose 1.6% to $71.94 a barrel, while futures for Brent crude, the European benchmark, rose 2.3% to $80.02 a barrel.
China, meanwhile, accused the U.S. of "trade bullyism" soon after the U.S and China issued levies of $260 billion on each other's goods.
Contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average
The economic calendar in the U.S. on Monday includes the Chicago Fed National Activity Index for August at 8:30 a.m. ET, and the Dallas Fed Manufacturing Survey for September at 10:30 a.m.
Earnings reports are scheduled Monday from Ascena Retail Group Inc. (ASNA) .
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2. -- Barrick Gold Buys Randgold Resources in $18.3 Billion Deal
Toronto-based Barrick will own around two-thirds of the combined company. Randgold's Mark Bristow will serve as CEO and Barrick's John Thorton will retain his role as executive chairman. The newly created gold-mining giant group will have a market value of around $18.3 billion, hold five of the world's 10 largest bullion deposits and have the ability to produce around 5.5 million ounces of gold each year.
"The boards of Barrick and Randgold believe that the merger will create an industry-leading gold company with the greatest concentration of Tier One Gold Assets in the industry, the lowest total cash cost position among senior gold peers," the companies said in a statement.
American depositary receipts of Randgold jumped 7.3% in premarket trading on Monday. Shares of Barrick Gold rose 3.4%.
3. -- Comcast Beats Disney and Fox in Bid for Sky
Comcast's final offer, in the third and ultimate round of bidding in a rare two-day auction that ended Saturday, Sept. 22, was £17.28 a share, the U.K. Takeover Panel said, a price that topped the £15.67-a-share-bid put forward by Disney/Fox and was some 17% higher than an offer Comcast made in July. The bid values Sky, Europe's biggest pay TV broadcaster, at more than £30.2 billion ($39.5 billion).
"This is a great day for Comcast," said CEO Brian Roberts. "This acquisition will allow us to quickly, efficiently and meaningfully increase our customer base and expand internationally."
"We now encourage Sky shareholders to accept our offer, which we look forward to completing before the end of October 2018," he added in a statement.
Sky shareholders will now have two weeks, under Takeover Panel rules, to evaluate the Comcast bid and decide whether to tender their shares.
"As the price of the final Comcast offer is materially superior, it is in the best interests of all Sky shareholders to accept the Comcast offer," Sky said in a statement following the panel's auction announcement on Saturday.
4. -- Porsche Stops Making Diesel Cars
Porsche's CEO said the maker of sports cars won't produce any new diesel models in the wake of parent company Volkswagen AG's (VLKAY) diesel emissions scandal.
CEO Oliver Blume told Sunday's Bild am Sonntag newspaper that, although Porsche itself never developed and produced diesel engines, its image has suffered from the scandal that erupted in 2015. He was quoted as saying the company wants to concentrate on "what we can do particularly well," citing high-performance gasoline models, hybrids and starting next year electric cars, the Associated Press reported.
"That also means that there will be no more diesels from Porsche in the future," he said.
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5. -- Tiger Woods Wins His 80th Tour Title
Tiger Woods won the Tour Championship on Sunday for his 80th PGA Tour title and first in more than five years.
Woods, donning his Sunday trademark red Nike shirt and black pants, fought through a shaky back nine to cap off an impressive comeback year following major back surgery.
The $1.62 million first place payday will add to Woods' more than $124 million in career on-course winnings.
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