NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Oops...China did it again.
Quick markets snapshot: Stocks are weaker in Europe in the morning and U.S. stock index futures are indicating a lower open. Asian stocks, however, climbed due to China's central bank's intervention. The dollar is strengthening given the continued Greece debt uncertainty.
Over the weekend, China's Central bank cut its benchmark lending rate by 25 basis points to 5.1%, marking the third time since November that China has taken action to goose its ailing economic growth. The central bank also reduced the one-year benchmark deposit rates by 25 basis points to 2.25% as it looks to respond to a recent spate of lackluster economic reports.
Investors have been anticipating such a response out of China and we believe further weak economic reports would lead to continued stimulus actions. Interestingly, recent data show that China officially became the world's largest crude oil importer in April, taking the title from the U.S. as the emerging market continues to voraciously consume commodities of all kinds to fuel its economic growth (weak as it may be) and as the U.S. reliance on crude wanes as more energy comes out of the domestic shale plays.
It is Greece though, that will attract the attention in the international spotlight this week as representatives from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund meet with Greek officials to try and finalize a deal on Greece's debt. The country stands to repay 750 million euros ($840 million) to the IMF on Tuesday.