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Pisani: FOMC & Apple & AT&T

Stocks today: neither Geithner, nor Steve Jobs, nor Bernanke move the needle much.

FOMC Statement: basically the same, but a slight upgrade to economic outlook, and a Hoenig dissent.

"Business spending on equipment and software appears to be picking up." They had previously said "Businesses are still cutting back on fixed investment..."

"...the pace of economic activity is likely to be moderate for a time..." They had previously said "economic activity is likely to remain weak for a time..."

Fed Pres Hoenig dissented, he believes that "economic and financial conditions had changed sufficiently that the expectation of exceptionally low levels of the fed funds rate for an extended period was no longer warranted."

The Apple iPad...good stuff, but AT&T provider a bummer.

There was predictably a selloff as the announcement came out, but that's reversed now...pricing at $499-$830 appears to be competitive. Apple up 1.5 percent.

The bummer: AT&T is the sole provider! Aaaggh! They can't handle all the usage now for the iPhone!

AT&T up 1.9 percent, Verizon down 1.2 percent.

Still, this is a big advance for mobile devices. To everyone who says, "it's just an iPhone with a big screen..." well, my initial reaction is...not quite.

1) Lots more possibilities than with an iPhone. Apps can be turbocharged with more functionality, due to the larger screen.

2) More interactive web surfing and reading, and with more touch points gaming will be far more sophisticated.

3) This is a more convenient way to use a home computer—there will be Pages, Keynote, Numbers, essentially an office suite designed for the iPad.

4) this should quickly morph into a TV as well...Slingbox?

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