NEW YORK (CNN/Money) -
Wackjob rally. That's what I called it when I was talking to Bill Hemmer this morning on CNN and I'm sticking by it. Yes, the market zoomed up on Tuesday. Yes, it was a major triple-digit gain for the Dow. But do you believe in fairies? Or miracles? (Did the U.S. really beat the Russians in hockey?)
The Dow climbed 230 to close at 8,274, up 2.9 percent, while the NAZ was up 53 to 1,259, or 4.4 percent. Hey watch me, Steve Marriott (No relation. This is the dude from Humble Pie, etc -- "I don't need no doctor." Please don't bug him for a hotel reservation!), I mean Andy Serwer, on CNN and Headline News. Read Loose Change for a list of the craziest mergers ever! Here's wazzup:
STOCKYARD...The big news here is the belief that the Fed will cut interest rates, specifically the Fed funds rate, from 1.75 percent all the way down to 1 percent by year end in three cuts -- 25/25/25 in Sept./Nov./Dec. meetings. Or at least this was the theory floated today by Lehman Bros...We drifted down a bit near the close. Could be more short-covering and bottom-fishing today. No WAY do we get a sustained rally from here....
Hats off to GM! Expensing stock options! Joining GE and P&G. More coming! But don't hold your breath for any tech companies to join in. (Cisco? No way!) Actually I was a little surprised that Microsoft reiterated its opposition to this recently, given how strongly Buffett feels about it, and given how tight Buffett is with Bill. Still could happen I guess. But GM is good....
Hey, congrats to Jon Miller for taking over as the new head of AOL division -- AOL Time Warner is the parent of CNN/Money. (What has he been smoking?) Let's see, Jon, all you've got to do is beat the SEC, fend off the DOJ, fix morale, fix the software, fix the ad market, slaughter Microsoft, and keep up with Don Logan. Ummm, better get to work. AOL the only stock IN THE WORLD down today, off 5 cents to $9.90...
Cisco very active and up big before the close. We shall see if it has any good news later...Techs and banks all big gainers...Level 3 down on a downgrade from S&P, Interpublic and Sprint PCS too, but they were the exceptions, thankfully!...Hey all's fair in love and bear!
QUESTION TO DICK GRASSO: When will you ask Martha Stewart to do the "right thing," as you called it, and step down from the board of the New York Stock Exchange? Yes, in this country you are innocent until proven guilty, and yes, it's admirable that you are sticking by someone who is under attack. (The NYSE is particularly prickly when it comes to press pressure!) But you know in some instances, when folks in certain positions are under investigation, they are asked to step down, at least temporarily.
This includes police officers who have been accused of wrongdoing, clergy, etc. If Douglas Faneuil's story is to be believed, you wonder at what point you, Mr. G., should give her the nudge. It looks so greedy and grasping (even if she is technically innocent, as Jack Coffee suggests she may be) that I believe it would be very difficult to justify her keeping that position. (By the way, Gerald Levin and Jean-Marie Messier are also on the NYSE board.)
Re: Disney: "They made some big mistakes...California Adventure theme park as an example. May be time for some changes...ABC is circling the drain in prime time...Locally they got beaten in N.Y. a couple of weeks ago by the Univision UHF station...Times they are a changing, dude! P."....
Mark Twain said: "Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind...it doesn't matter." before Satchel Paige, I believe...."Tie your mother down," of course, is a quote by Farrokh Bulsara (better known as Freddie Mercury, of Queen) -- C"....
Freaky mergers: "1. Xerox and Wurlitzer. (They're going to make reproductive organs) 2. Fairchild Electronics and Honeywell computers. (The new company will be called Fairwell Honeychild) 3. Polygram Records, Warner Brothers and Keebler. (The new company will be called Poly-Warner-Cracker.)" Nice!!...A MAJOR shoutout to Phyllis Preston! Hey bird!...Least I haven't been RIFed yet?.
A haiku (sort of) from the gallows, by Deep Blue:
There is no silver lining
There is no lemonade to be made
The sky is permanently overcast
Hope was a weed
This is what Rome looked like in the end
And now I have to go out and eat at Boston Market.
Andrew Serwer is editor-at-large of Fortune magazine.
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