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Markets closed up today on Wall Street:
S&P 500: +0.04%, Nasdaq: 0.38%, Dow: 0.02%, Oil: -1.47%, Gold: +0.31%.
On the commodities front, Oil (NYSE:USO) dropped to $88.73 per barrel. Precious metals were up, with Gold (NYSE:GLD) climbing to $1,729.50 per ounce, and Silver (NYSE:SLV) climbing to $32.42 per ounce at the bell.
The family of a teenage Maryland girl, who died of a cardiac arrest last December, is suing Monster Beverage Corp. (NASDAQ:MNST) after alleging that her death was caused by “caffeine toxicity” brought on by the consumption of the company’s energy drink. Each 24-oz. can of the drink contains 240 milligrams of caffeine, the equivalent of seven 12-oz. cans of Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO), according to the filing.
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In South Africa, approximately 100,000 workers, mostly miners, have been on strike for better pay since August. The strikes have led to credit downgrades of Africa’s top economy and marred the nation’s image overseas. But the mining companies operating in that theater have not stepped down. On Monday, AngloGold Ashanti (NYSE:AU), the third largest gold producer in the world, issued an ultimatum to the illegally striking miners to return to work by Wednesday or be fired.
In the wake of expected losses up to $1 billion in Europe, American auto manufacturer Ford (NYSE:F) could be gearing up to close a factory in Genk, Belgium. An emergency meeting with unions at the Genk factory, announced on Monday, has sparked concerns that a long-speculated closure could be imminent. Shuttering the plant, which employs 4,300 people, would cost about $1.1 billion for an annual savings of $730 million.
The familiar joys and stresses of holiday shopping are rapidly approaching once again, and when consumers begin buying all those gifts for the loved ones on their lists, it’s expected more will opt to skip the stores and order their presents online than ever before. FedEx (NYSE:FDX), which will ship so many of those online purchases, released a report Monday stating that the world’s second-largest shipping company expects to have its busiest holiday season on record. FedEx estimates it will deliver around 280 million packages between Thanksgiving and Christmas, 13 percent more than last year.
It appears that the expansion by Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) into four Scandinavian countries last week was only the tip of the iceberg, as job postings found on the company’s website Monday signal even larger moves are on the horizon. The online video streaming service posted a call for “experienced linguists” to presumably help facilitate the service’s translation into seven new languages.
Posters matching the event invite have started going up at San Jose’s California Theater as Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) prepares for its big event on Tuesday. While the company’s secrecy policy has meant that no one is absolutely certain of what the company has in store for unveiling, most bets are on first glimpse of the iPad Mini, perhaps alongside updated iMacs and a new MacBook.
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