Good morning! Here's what you need to know.

Janet Yellen was confirmed as the first chairwoman in the Fed's 100-year history. The vote was 56-26, with many senators missing the vote due to the severe weather gripping the Midwest. Yellen, who previously served as Vice Chair under Ben Bernanke, will also be the first Democrat to run the Fed since Paul Volcker — and, at 67, the oldest to take up the position. Eleven Republicans voted to confirm. Yellen is "...arguably the most dovish member of the FOMC – meaning she tends to focus on unemployment concerns rather than keeping inflation at bay," BI's Matt Boesler writes. "Yet Yellen's record shows that she has not always argued for easy monetary policy and higher inflation, despite her dovish tilt." New York won't see temperatures rise much above single digits today. In a new note, Goldman Sachs' Kris Dawsey outlined what the country-wide freeze we've been experiencing recently may mean for economic data. Among other things, he said, "we expect that colder-than-normal weather during the survey period for the December payroll report probably pushed employment growth below its recent trend. (Our preliminary forecast is for a 175,000 gain in total payrolls to be released this Friday.)." Eurozone inflation continues to run at severely low levels, raising fears of deflation. Ex-food and energy, prices climbed just 0.7% last month, well below the ECB's target of 2%. Still, the central banks is unlikely to take action, Marketwatch says, since it's created strict guidelines for taking further monetary action. "It expects sluggish growth of 1.1% in 2014 and 1.5% in 2015, and forecasts inflation will stay well below its 2% target for two more years. Unless growth and inflation undershoot that already weak baseline scenario, additional action is unlikely." Not much economic data today. At 8:30 a.m., we get the U.S. Trade Balance report for November from the Census. Consensus is for the deficit to decrease to $39.9 billion in November from $40.6 billion in October. Fed members Eric Rosengren and John Williams speak today. Demand for Irish debt has soared as the isle floats its first debt debt since emerging from the "Troika's" financial stabilization program. FT: "An overflowing order book north of €13bn for Ireland's 10 year bond sale - its first debt sale since formally exiting an international bailout programme last month – has allowed bankers to tighten the pricing of the deal. Dublin's treasurers had intended to cap the size of the deal at about €3bn-€3.5bn, but the ravenous demand could allow it increase it markedly and make a big dent in its funding requirements for 2014 by early January." Stocks in Asia saw uneven gains, with Thailand's exchange rallying more than 2% to pair recent losses borne of political turmoil there. European stocks and U.S. futures were up.  Morgan Stanley cut Netflix to underweight from equalweight with a price target of $310.00 (from $333.00), saying the video streaming service now faces stiffer competition from the likes of Amazon, HBO Go, and Hulu. Shares closed at about $360 yesterday. Michael Bay has released a statement explaining what happened during his abortive presentation of Samsung's new curved-screen display at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. "I got so excited to talk, that I skipped over the Exec VP’s intro line and then the teleprompter got lost. Then the prompter went up and down – then I walked off. I guess live shows aren’t my thing."
China is opening up to foreign video game console makers for the first time ever, creating a huge market opportunity for the likes of Sony and Microsoft — the current market is about $14 billion. But there won't be overnight windfalls. Reuters: " The absence of consoles has left PC games with almost two-thirds of the market, according to data released at the annual China games industry conference in December. Browser gaming accounted for just over 15 percent and mobile gaming was nearly 14 percent, the data also showed." Striking French tire workers are literally holding management hostage until their demands are met. Marketwatch: "Bernard Glesser, director of human resources, and Amiens plant manager Michel Dheilly were being held in a room whose access is controlled by union representatives and employees, Goodyear said in a statement. Mickael Wamen, a union representative, said the managers would be held until workers get a satisfactory response to their requests. He said the managers have been informed that they will spend the night at the site." 

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