The Factoid Factory: If you’re a regular viewer of CNBC, you’re probably familiar with the dozens of market factoids we put on the screen. “Dow Hits New Intraday High”. “S&P 500 at 6-Year High”. “Nasdaq Could Close At Best Level Since The Dawn Of Time”. Etc.
Those factoids are the responsibility of the Breaking News Desk, and are especially important on days like today, when the market is breaking records and the Dow (as of this writing) is threatening to break 12,500 for the first time ever.
I can name every World Series winner since 1950 from memory, but I haven’t, in fact, memorized the closes for each major average each day for that period. Many of our facts come from an Excel spreadsheet designed by Executive Producer Alex Crippen. It incorporates a live data feed, and Alex has programmed in an amazing number of stats and features. One example: if you want to know the last time an average closed higher than today, that date shows up in a different color. A tip of the hat to Alex for making my life that much easier.
By the way, the Phillies got swept by the Yankees in 1950.
Let’s See That CPI: A big part of the market’s rally to new highs today was November’s Consumer Price Index report, which was unexpectedly tame when it came out at 8:30 a.m. ET. As usual, Rick Santelli brought us the numbers from the Chicago Board of Trade and Senior Economics Correspondent Steve Liesman was on hand to interpret them.
An unseen but always exciting part of the economic stat process is getting the “deko” up on the screen as quickly as possible.
"Squawk Box" line producer Meghan Reeder always psyches us up at about 8:28 a.m. with her trademark chant … “We’re setting records today!” For CPI today, producer Anne Trivett shouted out the number when it came in, Meghan constructed the deko and put it in our system, and it was up on screen nearly instantaneously. It’s more difficult with reports that have multiple components, such as the monthly jobs report, but thanks to several sets of fast fingers and Meghan’s motivation, we usually get the job done.
So those of you who watch CNBC with the sound down (and you know who you are) we’re working hard for you. Now please turn the sound back up!
Angst Over Apple?: No denying the roll Apple Computer stock has been on over the past few years, thanks in large part to the success of the iPod. But word came down at 6:30 a.m. ET that Apple was delaying its annual report as it investigates the granting of past stock options. "Squawk Box" anchor Joe Kernen explained exactly what the delay involved and how it was affecting the stock in premarket trading. The stock ultimately fell during a very positive day for the overall market.