Good morning, friends and Fortune readers.
Happy New Year! All of us here at Fortune hope your 2014 was great and that your 2015 will be even better.
Wall Street looks set to start 2015 on a high note, with stock index futures pointing to a higher open. The S&P 500 index, a broad market gauge, saw its third-straight year of double-digit gains in 2014, the longest positive streak for the index since a five-year run between 1995 and 1999.
Here’s what else you need to know about this morning.
1. Piketty turns down award
Thomas Piketty was certainly a divisive figure in 2014 — progressives raved about his take on economic inequality, while conservatives pointed out what they believed were flaws in his data. He’s keeping the controversy train rolling in 2015, refusing the Legion d’Honneur, the highest award given by the French government. Not sure if Piketty has another 500+ page tome in him this year, but he certainly seems to be one for making headlines. According to the BBC, Piketty is part of a proud tradition of turning down the award: Jean-Paul Sartre and Pierre and Marie Curie had no time for it either.
2. Snapchat rakes it in
The photo messaging company run by Evan Spiegel brought in around $486 million in a recent round of funding, according to an SEC filing. According to Bloomberg, the new round of funding values Snapchat at $10 billion. The company has attracted a ton of users and press, but has also faced serious privacy questions. This latest infusion could be a sign that, despite the problems, investors think there remains serious promise in the Silicon Valley company.
3. Manufacturing in focus
The Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing report for December, due out at 10 a.m. ET, is today’s main economic event. Economists expect a reading of 57.5, down from November’s 58.7 reading, when the index grew for the 18th consecutive month. The report should give some indication of how the economy was faring late last year.
4. Hyundai, Kia see slower sales growth
Korean carmaker Hyundai and its affiliate Kia Motors expect their weakest sales growth in more than a decade this year, as they struggle to compete with Japanese rivals benefiting from a weaker yen, The Wall Street Journal reports. The two South Korean automakers predicted a combined 2.5% increase in global sales to 8.2 million vehicles in 2015, the Journal said.
5. Elon Musk is divorcing his wife … again
Lots of people get divorced. Many even get divorced multiple times. Not too many can say they’re part of the club Tesla (TSLA) and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk is joining, though — divorcing the same person twice. Musk is getting divorced from his wife, actress Talulah Riley, less than two years after they remarried. Musk and Riley originally divorced in 2012.
—Reuters contributed to this report.