On the bright side, stocks could’ve done a whole lot worse given the persistent deterioration in Europe.First, the scoreboard:
Dow: -25.6 pts, -0.2%
S&P 500: -3.1 pts, -0.3%
NASDAQ: -18.5 pts, -0.8%
And now, the top stories:
- After being closed for Thanksgiving Day, U.S. markets had a half-day to catch up with all of Europe’s escalating drama. Among the many headlines, Fitch cut Portugal’s rating to junk status and Moody’s cut Hungary’s rating to junk status. Italy had another horrific bond auction this morning, which saw 6-month and 2-year yields soar further into crisis levels. Spain is also reportedly seeking financial aid. Also, Belgium got downgraded by S&P and Fitch. The fact that German yields are now rising isn’t helping the situation. Here Are 20 Banks That Will Get Crushed If The PIIGS Go Bust >
- European leaders continue to wrestle with a solution to the eurozone debt crisis. Yesterday in a joint presser, Germany’s Angela Merkel, France’s Nicolas Sarkozy, and Italy’s Mario Monti (aka Merkonti) resisted calls for an ECB heavy bailout. However, “Sarkozy and Merkel ‘confirmed their support for Italy, saying that they are aware that the collapse of Italy would inevitably lead to the end of the euro,'” reported Bloomberg. Here Are 15 Companies That Will Get Whacked If Europe Falls >
- U.S. futures were pointing to a lower open but rallied minutes before the markets opened for trading. There was no economic data scheduled for release today, and no major companies reported earnings.
- AT&T said it would book a $4 billion pre-tax charge in Q4. This is in anticipation of potential breakup fees for its proposed takeover of T-Mobile, a deal which is looking less and less likely to close. Shares of AT&T closed down 0.5%.
- Let’s not forget that it’s Black Friday. Deep discounts and exclusive in-store-only deals, like Best Buy’s monster LCD TV deal, had Americans lining up before stores opened. Citigroup’s Deborah Weinswig noted that favourable weather would be good for the brick-and-mortar retailers. Amazon.com was an underperformer today, falling 3.5%.
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