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) -- Stock futures pointed to a stronger open Monday on mergers news and as the dollar strengthened amid continued concerns that China will increase its interest rates to dampen growth.

Futures for the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

were up by 30 points, or 25 points above fair value, at 11,182. Futures for the

S&P 500

were 6 points higher, or 4 points above fair value, at 1201, and


futures were ahead by 15 points, or 13 points above fair value.

Mining equipment shares were gaining ground ahead of Monday's opening bell on news that



plans to acquire mining equipment maker


( BUCY) in a deal worth $8.6 billion, including debt. Bucyrus shares were up 29.8% at $90.37. Rivals

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Joy Global

( JOYG) and



traded more than 7% higher to $77.81 and $26.20, respectively. Caterpillar's stock was down 1.8% to $79.62.

Shares of

Isilon Systems

( ISLN) were up 29.1% to $33.97 on news that



agreed to buy the networking storage company for $2.25 billion.

Stocks sold off Friday despite a stronger-than-expected read on November consumer sentiment as investors worried that a potential interest rate hike in China would slow global growth.

In Europe, officials in

Ireland denied the country is seeking a bailout from the European Union as EU leaders try to temper fears that the country will have to default on its debt.

Overseas, Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.8% while Japan's Nikkei gained 1.1%. The FTSE in London was up by 0.4% and the DAX in Frankfurt was ahead by 0.7%.

The Commerce Department reported a 1.2% increase in October retail sales, which outpaced expectations for a 0.7% uptick and September's rise of 0.7%. Excluding autos, sales rose 0.4% in October, meeting estimates but falling short of September's growth of 0.5%.

Manufacturing in the New York region suffered in November as the New York Fed's Empire Manufacturing index fell to -11.14 in November, after October's reading of 15.73. Economists had been anticipating a reading of 11.7, according to

At 10 a.m., the Commerce Department reports on September business inventories. According to, inventories are projected to show 0.9% growth, after climbing 0.6% higher in August



stock was up 0.1% to $21.72 in premarket trading after it topped consensus estimates by 1 cent with third-quarter adjusted earnings of 31 cents a share although sales of $11.6 billion missed analysts' revenue estimate of $11.75 billion.

For the fourth quarter, Lowe's forecast earnings of between 16 cents and 19 cents a share and full-year earnings are expected to be between $1.37 and $1.40 a share. Analysts have been anticipating fourth-quarter earnings of 18 cents a share and full-year earnings of $1.41 a share.

BHP Billiton


withdrew its $40 billion offer to buy

Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan


on Sunday, citing government opposition. BHP's stock was up by 0.9% to $87.74 in early trading while Potash's stock was down by 0.7% at $139.

In commodity markets, the January crude oil contract was up by 64 cents to trade at $85.52 a barrel. The December gold contract was down by $3.40 to $1,362.10 an ounce.

The dollar traded higher against a basket of currencies, with the dollar index up by 0.5%, and the benchmark 10-year Treasury note weakened 23/32, lifting the yield to 2.869%.


--Written by Melinda Peer in New York


Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors and reporters from holding positions in any individual stocks.