Morning Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Here are 10 things you should know for Monday, Aug. 19:

1. -- U.S. stock futures were pointing to a flat open for Wall Street on Monday as investors look toward the release on Wednesday of the minutes from July's Federal Open Market Committee meeting.

European stocks were trading lower early Monday. Stocks in Japan and China each finished Monday with gains of 0.8%.


2. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. Monday is bare.


3. -- U.S. stocks on Friday slipped, post back-to-back weekly declines as some encouraging economic indicators were outweighed by the possibility that the Federal Reserve will begin to curb its stimulus program before the end of the year.

The S&P 500 fell 0.33% to 1,655.83, putting the index down 3% the past two weeks.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0.2% to 15,081.47. The blue chip index lost 2.23% last week. The Nasdaq closed down 0.09% to 3,602.78. The tech-heavy index closed off 1.57% last week.


4. -- The Securities and Exchange Commission's anti-bribery unit has opened an investigation into the practices of JPMorgan Chase ( JPM) in China, The New York Times reported.

The Times, citing a confidential U.S. government document, said the inquiry centered on whether the bank had hired the children of Chinese officials to help it gain business in China.

JPMorgan is said to have hired the son of a former Chinese banking regulator who is the chairman of China Everbright Group, a state-controlled financial conglomerate, the newspaper reported. After the son's hiring, the bank won assignments from the Chinese conglomerate.


5. -- Apple's ( AAPL) next iPhone will be gold, according to a report in TechCrunch.

TheStreet's Rocco Pendola wrote that gold is big in China, and therefore a gold iPhone would be big in China. But he cautioned: "If you have anything resembling a long-term field of vision for this company, you best be concerned."


6. -- Alibaba, China's largest e-commerce company, could raise billions of dollars in an initial public offering of stock as early as this year and is deciding whether to list its shares in Hong Kong or New York, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar talks the company is holding with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

The IPO could value Alibaba at $70 billion, based on analysts' estimates, making it one of the world's biggest Internet IPOs, according to the Journal.


7. -- Urban Outfitters ( URBN) is expected by analysts to report on Monday fiscal second-quarter earnings of 48 cents a share share on revenue of $768.1 million.


8. -- General Motors ( GM) is recalling nearly 293,000 Chevrolet Cruze compact cars in the U.S. because the power-assisted brakes can fail.

The recall affects Cruzes made in Lordstown, Ohio, from the 2011 and 2012 model years that are equipped with 1.4-liter turbocharged gasoline engines and 6T-40 six-speed automatic transmissions, the automaker said Friday.

It's the eighth recall of the car since it was introduced in September of 2010, according to records compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, The Associated Press reported.

The company said that Cruze brake problems have caused 27 low-speed crashes but no injuries.

GM shares fell 13 cents on Friday to $34.25.


9. -- United States Steel ( X) on Friday named Mario Longhi, the steelmaker's president and chief operating officer, as CEO. Longhi replaces John Surma, who will step down Sept. 1.

U.S. Steel also named David Burritt as chief financial officer.

Shares of U.S. Steel closed on Friday at $18.82, down 7 cents.


10. -- Lee Daniels' The Butler, starring Forest Whitaker and and Oprah Winfrey, debuted in the top spot at the box office with a take of $25 million, according to studio estimates.


-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Joseph Woelfel

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Copyright 2013 TheStreet.com Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

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