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Morning Briefing: 10 Things You Should Know

Tickers in this article: AAPL FLO JPM RIG UPS VRA

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- U.S. stock futures were pointing slightly higher while Asian shares ended Monday's session with gains amid renewed confidence in an economic recovery in China.

European stocks were rising marginally.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index rose 0.6% to close at 23,413.26. Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.


Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke speaks Monday afternoon at the University of Michigan. Bernanke and Ford School of Public Policy Dean Susan Collins will discuss monetary policy and the U.S. economy.


U.S. stocks on Friday finished mixed as financial stocks were a big drag after Wells Fargo (WFC) kicked off bank earnings with mixed results.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 17 points, or 0.13%, to 13,488. The index added 0.4% during the week.


United Parcel Service(UPS) has withdrawn its €5.2 billion ($7 billion) takeover of TNT Express after it learned that European regulators would block the deal.

UPS offered to buy TNT, Europe's second-largest delivery company, in March, to better compete with Deutsche Post's DHL. But regulators said in October that the deal would lead to over-concentration in the sector.

"We are extremely disappointed with the EC's position," Scott Davis, UPS chairman and CEO, said in a statement.


Apple(AAPL) cut orders for components for the iPhone 5 due to weaker-than-expected demand, people familiar with the situation told The Wall Street Journal.

Apple's orders for iPhone 5 screens for the January-March quarter have dropped to roughly half of what the company had previously planned to order, two of the people told the newspaper. Apple also has cut orders for components other than screens, the report said.


JPMorgan Chase's(JPM) board is expected to dock the 2012 bonuses of CEO Jamie Dimon and another top executive because of the "London Whale" trading debacle, the Journal reported, citing people close to the company.


Transocean(RIG) disclosed that activist investor Carl Icahn acquired a 1.56% stake in the offshore rig contractor and is looking to boost that holding, Reuters reported.


Hostess Brands said Friday that Flowers Foods(FLO) is the lead bidder for most of its bread brands, including Wonder Bread.


Vera Bradley(VRA) said Friday its Chief Financial and Administrative Officer Jeffrey Blade has resigned.


Switzerland's Swatch will pay about $1 billion to acquire Canada's Harry Winston watch and jewelry brand.


-- Written by Joseph Woelfel

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