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This holiday season is setting up to be a real nail biter. Most holiday forecasts call for flat or just slightly higher sales than last year. But several factors may tip the scale. On the plus-side: there is a more upbeat mood among affluent consumers as well as a strong appetite for gadgets and electronics. On the downside: there is an uncertain economy, with unemployment stubbornly high, and a consumer who looks at spending quite differently than in the past. What will shift the balance?
Stocks fell in the last few minutes of trading Monday to close mixed despite being higher most of the day after an upbeat retail sales report, and news that firms were beginning to spend cash on acquisitions. Caterpillar rose, Disney fell.
What follows is a roundup of corporate earnings reports for Monday, Nov. 15
Stocks fell on Monday as investors recouped from last week's selloff to focus on an upbeat retail sales report, and news that firms were beginning to spend cash on acquisitions. Caterpillar rose, Disney fell.
Stocks gained amid news of strong retail sales in October and acquisitions by Caterpillar and EMC, and despite continuing worries over debt troubles in periphery European countries. Caterpillar rose, while Disney fell.
U.S. stock index futures continued to point to a slightly higher open Monday after news of a better-than-expected jump in retail sales in October, and despite a drop in an indicator of manufacturing in New York.
Plus, Cramer highlights the most important events of the coming week.
With 13 retailers reporting earning next week, the "Fast" traders share which they'll be listening to.
With the reversal in the markets, the traders recommend watching these key levels in the S&P.
Retailers largely reported better-than-expected sales in October, providing some momentum heading into the Christmas holiday shopping season.
Ahead of October's same-store sales results out Thursday, a retail analyst gives her best trades going into November.
Although retailers are expected to report monthly sales gains that are below last year's levels, there are still expected to be some bright spots in the report that bode well for the upcoming Christmas holiday shopping season.
Setting an encouraging tone for the upcoming holiday season, retail sales in October continued the momentum that was seen in the prior month, according to a report by MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse.
The "Fast Money" traders give you their best plays to start the week.
Cramer makes the call on viewers' favorite stocks.
Several recent surveys are pointing in one direction: there will be big opportunities for retailers this holiday season online. More and more often consumers are starting their shopping online giving retailers a chance to win a customer.
Fast trader and retail queen Patty Edwards thinks this holiday may be better than the Street thinks. Get her latest retail trades in this web exclusive post!
We've updated this post with more trades and insights from the Fast Money family.
Welcome to the new reality: consumers want to—or have to—pay in cash, and that means it's time to starting pinching pennies to save up for holiday gifts.