THE LOCAL SHARE MARKET'S HIGHER ...AS INVESTORS LOOK PAST THE FISCAL NEGOTIATIONS IN THE US.

THE ASX 200'S UP HALF A PER CENT LED BY MINING STOCKS AFTER IRON ORE PRICES JUMPED OVERNIGHT.

US MARKETS WERE SHUT OVERNIGHT FOR THE NEW YEAR HOLIDAY... ON MONDAY NIGHT THEY CLOSED HIGHER ON EXPECTATIONS A DEBT DEAL WOULD BE STRUCK.

TAKING A LOOK AT COMMODITIES.... GOLD IS EDGING LOWER

THE AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR...REMAINS CLOSE TO 104 US CENTS

IN THE US THERE ARE DOUBTS WHETHER THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES WILL APPROVE A DEBT DEAL PASSED IN THE SENATE.

THE HOUSE IS DUE TO VOTE ON THE MEASURE SOMETIME TODAY.

WESTPAC ECONOMIST ELLIOT CLARKE SAYS THERE IS A TIME PRESSURE TO GET THE DEAL PASSED AS THE NEW CONGRESS... AS VOTED ON IN LAST YEARS ELECTION...WILL COME IN FROM THURSDAY WHICH COULD BE A MAJOR SET BACK TO GETTING A DEAL PASSED.

A PRIVATE SURVEY SHOWS THE AUSTRALIAN MANUFACTURING SECTOR HAS NOW BEEN CONTRACTING FOR 10 MONTHS IN A ROW.

THE PERFORMANCE OF MANUFACTURING INDEX BYT HE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP CAME IN AT A READING OF 44-POINT-THREE FOR DECEMBER.

THAT'S BELOW THE 50 POINT LEVEL THAT INDICATES EXPANSION.

A-I GROUP SAYS A SOFTENING DOMESTIC ECONOMY, WEAK GLOBAL DEMAND AND THE HIGH DOLLAR AND RISING UTILITY COSTS ARE ALL WEIGHING ON THE SECTOR.