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SYDNEY (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stock futures were trading sharply lower in Asian trading hours on Monday after rating agency Standard & Poor's lowered its rating on U.S. debt to AA+ from AAA late Friday. In addition, Europe is continuing to struggle to contain its sovereign debt woes and said over the weekend it will actively implement its bond-buying program in an effort to calm markets. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were down 248 points at 11,156, Nasdaq 100 futures fell 42.25 points to 2,144.75 while S&P 500 futures dropped 25.90 points to 1,171.90. Oil futures fell $2.41 to $84.47 a barrel in Nymex electronic trading while investors sought the safety of gold, pushing futures in the precious metal up $35.40 at $1,687.30 an ounce.