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CEOs Swapped at GM and Lululemon While the Dow Fell 265 Points

By Jack Kramer and Nick Martell - Dec 16, 2013 at 6:00AM

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Good morning, good lookin'. Here are the three things you need to know on Dec. 16.

Links worth snacking on:
We don't blame you for losing all your dignity on a SantaCon pub crawl, because Wall Street has been giving investors a good reason to drink. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI 1.05%) fell four out of five days last week for its second straight weekly decline on stimulus worries. Now all eyes are on this week's big two-day Federal Reserve meeting. Will stimulus slow down or charge through the new year?

1. Plenty of fresh new CEOs
lululemon athletica
(LULU -3.39%) has not looked good this year, following its see-through-pants problem and controversial comments from its founder, so it's trying a new yoga pose with Laurent Potdevin, the current Tom's Shoes CEO (and former Burton CEO), starting in January. Meanwhile, General Motors (GM 1.35%) is crashing through the glass gender barrier by introducing the first-ever woman to lead a major car company -- 33-year GM vet Mary Barra is calling the shots starting next month as well.
2. Mergers and acquisitions were everywhere
Super-sized food distributor Sysco (SYY 1.90%) is cooking up $3.5 billion to buy U.S. Foods. Word also leaked that Discovery Communications is trying to buy competitor Scripps Networks, owner of TV icons Food Network and HGTV. Meanwhile, after months of Justice Department delays, the biggest airline merger in history became official as the jumbo combo of American Airlines and United Airways made its debut on the Nasdaq stock exchange under the ticker AAL and the name American Airlines Group (AAL 3.55%). And on Friday, Sprint hinted that it might make a move for T-Mobile in America.

3. Congress had a busy week
D.C.'s been busy like Santa's elves at the North Pole before Congress heads home for its holiday vacay. The House passed a bipartisan budget deal that will prevent a potential government shutdown in January by increasing Uncle Sam's allowance for two years -- and now the Senate just has to stamp its approval next week. In the meantime, five regulatory agencies approved "The Volcker Rule," which prevents banks from gambling with customers' deposits that are federally insured. It's been a festively lucrative habit for Wall Street, but the new policy will clamp down in 2015.

What MarketSnacks is checking out this week:
  • Monday: "Empire State" Manufacturing Survey
  • Tuesday:  Two-day Federal Reserve meeting begins
  • Wednesday: Big speech from Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke
  • Thursday: Weekly Jobless Claims, Existing Home Sales
  • Friday: Another third-quarter GDP reading

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Stocks Mentioned

Dow Jones Industrial Average (Price Return) Stock Quote
Dow Jones Industrial Average (Price Return)
$31,097.26 (1.05%) $321.83
Lululemon Athletica Inc. Stock Quote
Lululemon Athletica Inc.
$263.38 (-3.39%) $-9.23
General Motors Company Stock Quote
General Motors Company
$32.19 (1.35%) $0.43
Sysco Corporation Stock Quote
Sysco Corporation
$86.32 (1.90%) $1.61
American Airlines Group Inc. Stock Quote
American Airlines Group Inc.
$13.13 (3.55%) $0.45

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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