Stocks: Losing steam as 2013 winds down

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It could be a quiet day Monday as markets approach the end of an exceptionally strong year.

Little economic or corporate news is scheduled for the day and U.S. stock futures were drifting ahead of the opening bell.

Typically this time of year sees light trading volumes as many investors and traders take time off work.

U.S. stocks ended little changed Friday but they're capping off a stellar year. All three indexes have risen more than 25% in 2013.

Shares of Crocs (CROX) surged 14% in premarket trading Monday, after private equity firm Blackstone Group agreed to invest about $200 million in the company. Crocs also announced a $350 million stock buyback and said CEO John McCarvel was retiring.

Shares of Alcoa (AA) edged lower amid reports that Ford (F) will reveal in January that it will start using military grade Alcoa metal in its best-selling F-150 pickups.

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On the international front, European markets were relatively flat in morning trading. Asian markets ended with mixed results.

Japan's Nikkei closed the day on a high note, rising 0.7%. The benchmark index has surged more than 50% since the start of 2013 as government policies helped boost investor sentiment.

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