Tuesday's Early Headlines
- Existing Home Sales Expected to Fall -- The National Association of Realtors is expected to say that existing home sales slipped to 5 million homes last month from 5.05 million in January when it releases its report at 10 a.m. EDT. That would mark the third straight month of declines from November's read of 6.49 million, when the first time homebuyers tax credit had initially been set to expire before being extended to April.
- Greece Wants European Solution to Debt Crisis -- Reuters reports that Greece Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou says the country wants a European solution to its debt crisis and expects positive results from a European Union summit on March 25 and 26. "Greece is not going to the EU summit as a beggar," Papaconstantinou told an investment conference in Athens, according to the report. "There must be a political mechanism to ensure the stability of the euro zone and support the efforts made by every country."
- Monetary Policy Should Follow Simple Rules: Plosser -- At a conference at the Czech National Bank in Prague, Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Charles Plosser said that the central bank should follow "simple" rules in setting monetary policy. Plosser argued that in order to be less discretionary on setting interest rates, the Fed should tie policy to an inflation target, even if the economy is operating below full employment. Plosser also called for central bank independence, saying that maintaining financial market stability was a lesser priority.
- Time Warner Reportedly Leading Bidder for MGM -- Time Warner (TWX) has put in the highest bid for Hollywood studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Reuters reports. Time Warner, Lions Gate Entertainment (LGF) and billionaire Len Blavatnik's Access Industries put up rival bids of $1.2 billion to $1.5 billion for MGM, the report said, citing sources familiar with the matter, with Time Warner putting in the highest bid of the three