Russian foreign minister, Sergey V. Lavrov, said that the government of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria was ready to engage in peace negotiations without preconditions and he urged the United States and other Western nations to bring Syrian opposition groups to the table for a new round of talks.
Stock index futures pared gains to trade flat, pressured by a decline in McDonald's shares after its results and as investors booked profits after the S&P 500 index hit yet another closing high on Friday. McDonald's Corp earnings came in a busy week of reports, with about one-third of S&P 500 companies due to report, including Apple and entertainment provider Netflix Inc . McDonald's Corp reported a 4 percent rise in quarterly profit, while global sales at established restaurants were in line with analysts' expectations. Shares fell 2 percent to $97.
President Barack Obama is meeting with his most loyal supporters to discuss ways to promote his agenda on issues like immigration reform and the economy as lawmakers prepare to return home for their annual summer break.