Before the bell: What you need to know before the US market open

Billy Bambrough
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When 10 per cent retail sales growth isn't enough... Only in China (Source: Getty)

China's decelerating economy is causing fresh concern across international markets and the International Monetary Fund isn't helping.

Here's what you need to know before the US market opens at 14:30 London time.

The US market is pointing heavily south ahead of the open. The S&P 500 is down by 0.31 per cent in the pre-market. The Nasdaq is 0.47 per cent lower and the Dow is 0.33 per cent off. The US 10-year bond yield is down two basis points at 1.62 per cent.

Japan's Nikkei took a beating overnight, closing down 3.5 per cent. Across Europe the Spainish IBEX was 1.6 per cent down by midday trading, leading losses across Europe. The FTSE 100 was down 0.7 per cent a short time ago.

Concerns over China are back...

China's fixed-asset investment slowed to 9.6 per cent through May, the first time it has been below 10 per cent since 2000.

Read more: Chinese Uber rival Didi Chuxing raises another $600m

Additionally, retail sales rose 10 per cent year-over-year, just missing the 10.1 per cent that was expected. China's yuan fell 0.4 per cent to 6.5864 per dollar and is nearing its weakest level since the first quarter of 2011.

It's not only China's economic performance that's stoke fears...

The International Monetary Fund has warned China over its growing pile of corporate debt. The total debt of state-owned enterprises in China makes up 55 per cent of corporate debt but accounts for just 22 per cent of economic output.

David Lipton, first deputy managing director of the IMF, told a group of economists in the country:

Company debt problems today can become systemic debt problems tomorrow. Systemic debt problems can lead to much lower economic growth, or a banking crisis. Or both.

Stocks to watch

LinkedIn is being bought by Microsoft. Really. LinkedIn shares were up by almost 50 per cent following the announcement, while Microsoft shares were suspended before the news broke.

Meanwhile, Apple is starting its World Wide Developer Conference and will struggle to match the excitement the latest Silicon Valley tie-up has sparked. Here's how to tune into Apple's WWDC tonight.

Read more: The seven things to look out for at Apple WWDC

Elsewhere, private security firm G4S and gun maker Smith & Wesson have become caught up in the tragic Orlando shooting that happened early on Sunday morning.

The man behind the Orlando shooting had worked at the firm since September 2007 as a security officer G4S revealed this morning – claiming to have twice screened him with "with no adverse findings".

Shares in Smith & Wesson (SWHC) are surging pre-market as nervous Americans stockpile weapons in case of a government crackdown on gun ownership.

Companies reporting today

No companies of note posting results today however Smith & Wesson numbers are out on Thursday and tomorrow we'll hear from publishing company John Wiley & Sons.

In economic news

Not a lot of data out today, but it's the calm before the storm. Tomorrow brings the latest import and export prices, retail sales, and business inventories.

All is gearing up towards the Fed's interest rate decision on Wednesday at 7pm London time.

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