The local S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AJXO) (ASX: XJO) is expected to trade mostly flat following negative leads from overseas markets last week.

Here’s a recap:

  • Dow Jones (USA) – down 1.02%
  • NASDAQ (USA): down 1.15%
  • FTSE 100 (UK): down 0.64%
  • DAX (Germany): down -1.08%
  • EURO STOXX 50 (Europe): down 0.79%

In the US, a last day slide in technology shares, such as Apple, took the S&P 500 into negative territory for the 2015 calendar year.

In Europe, an all too familiar theme of falling commodity prices weighed on markets. FTSE-listed shares of BHP Billiton Limited (ASX: BHP) fell 0.08%, while Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) added 1.05%.

Closer to home, the S&P/ASX 200 is expected to open lower.

In company-specific news, packaging giant Amcor Limited (ASX: AMC) announced the purchase of US-based Deluxe Packages for $US45 million. Also in focus, Urbanise.com Ltd (ASX: UBN) signed its first New Zealand deal with FM provider One Place.

Mining contractor MACA Limited (ASX: MLD) announced a successful services contract with Regis Resources Limited (ASX: RRL) as part of a 5-year $115 million agreement at Regis’ expanded Moolart Well project.

Insurance Australia Group Ltd (ASX: IAG) announced the finalisation of its catastrophe reinsurance program for the 2016 calendar year, providing gross reinsurance protection of up to 80% ($7 billion). The reinsurance decision follows IAG’s partnership with Berkshire Hathaway in 2015.

Oil and gas giant, Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) revealed a gas discovery at offshore Myanmar. Woodside CEO Peter Coleman described the discovery as, “an encouraging outcome.”

Finally, Corporate Travel Management Ltd (ASX: CTD) confirmed its recent acquisition of US-based Montrose Travel.

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Motley Fool writer/analyst Owen Raszkiewicz does not have a financial interest in any of the companies mentioned.

Owen welcomes your feedback on Google plus (see below), LinkedIn or you can follow him on Twitter @ASXinvest.

Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.