The 4 Stocks Everybody's Talking About Today

The market moved up a bit today. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) was up 0.5%, the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC  ) 0.3%, and the Nasdaq (INDEX: ^IXIC  ) 0.02%. With that as context, let's look at the stocks everybody was talking about.

Mutual fund titan Legg Mason's (NYSE: LM  ) shares saw a 5.4% gain today as it announced that Chairman and CEO Mark Fetting will be stepping down on Oct. 1, probably in response to pressure from an activist investor. The stock has fallen about 70% from its 2007 highs as its now-departed star equity-fund manager Bill Miller saw hard times after a 15-year streak of beating the market.

Meanwhile, TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington interviewed Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco. Zuckerberg spoke about Facebook's not-so-great mobile results and also addressed the company's post-IPO stock swoon, terming the stock's performance "disappointing." Ahead of the interview, Facebook shares closed up 3.3% for the day.

On the Dow, Bank of America led all components with a 5.2% gain. Its shares are now just over $9 a stub. Among the related news of the day, Bloomberg reports that "Merrill Lynch & Co. won an appeal upholding a federal judge's dismissal of the second of two race-bias lawsuits filed against it by black financial advisors."

And finally, succession planning has been on the minds of Ford (NYSE: F  ) investors as its fantastic CEO Alan Mulally has been looking to step down. Bloomberg is reporting that Mark Fields is going to be promoted to chief operating officer at this month's board meeting, which will begin tomorrow. That would put him as the clear next in line when Mulally retires (that's expected to be the end of 2013). For more on Ford, check out our premium Ford report.

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Anand Chokkavelu owns shares of Bank of America and Ford as well as long-dated options on Bank of America. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America, Ford, and Facebook. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Ford and Facebook and creating a synthetic long position in Ford. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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