Stocks Dip at Open before Earnings

Stocks fell at the open on Monday as Wall Street looked to the next day’s start to the fourth-quarter earnings season.  The Dow Jones industrial average lately shed 63.03 points, or 0.47 percent, at 13,372.18. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell 6.61 points, or 0.45 percent, at 1,459.86. The Nasdaq Composite Index lost 11.81 points, or 0.39 percent, at 3,089.53.

Bank of America Corp said it will pay $3.6 billion to Fannie Mae to settle claims related to residential mortgage loans for the nine years to the end of 2008. The bank also entered into agreements with Nationstar Mortgage Holdings LLC and Walter Investment Management Corp to sell about $306 billion of residential mortgage servicing rights.

Struggling for the upper hand in the next round of debt talks, Republicans and Democrats this weekend drew lines in the sand they said they’d never cross when it comes to the U.S. debt limit.

The price of oil fell Monday, hit by uncertainty about what the U.S. Federal Reserve might do with its bond purchase program and data showing the U.S. unemployment rate unchanged. By early afternoon in Europe, benchmark crude for February delivery was down 44 cents to $92.65 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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