The Holidays Kick Off With Signs of Life in the Economy
Although superstorm Sandy is projected to drag down November sales, the Thanksgiving weekend and Cyber Monday broke records–shoppers spent $59.1 billion in stores and $1.46 billion online, with mobile devices accounting for a significant part of the boost.
The economy showed other hopeful signs, too: Consumer confidence is at its highest in over four years.
In other good economic news, Republicans and Democrats seem to be moving toward compromise over the fiscal cliff, while investor Warren Buffett published an op-ed urging the government to increase taxes on the wealthy.
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Meanwhile, Mary Schapiro, the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission, announced that she was stepping down–and President Obama is appointing another woman, Elisse Walter, to serve as chairman until Congress approves a permanent replacement.
Speaking of the SEC, the government agency charged Mathew Martoma, a former hedge fund manager at SAC Capital, with insider trading. The SEC alleges that he helped SAC reap $276 million in profit gained and losses avoided, making it the most profitable case of insider trading in history.
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photo: Steve Rhodes/Flickr