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MarketWatch for Wednesday, December 18, 2013

If you're keeping on top of the stock markets this morning, Wednesday, December 18, 2013...
If you're keeping on top of the stock markets this morning, Wednesday, December 18, 2013...

The Nikkei is up 309 points in Japan.
On Wall Street, the Dow dropped 9 points Tuesday.
And the Nasdaq slipped 6.


The Federal Reserve wraps up a two day meeting this afternoon. Investors are anxious to see if the Fed offers a time table for when it will start pulling back its economic stimulus program, now that the economy is gaining steam. Most economists believe the Fed will hold off on reducing its stimulus until at least march.

A generic version of Viagra will be available in 2017. Teva Pharmaceuticals will make the copycat version after agreeing to pay the drug's maker, pfizer, an undisclosed royalty for a license to produce a generic version. Viagra generated over a billion dollars in U.S. sales last year.

Microsoft says it expects to name a new CEO to replace Steve Ballmer by early next year. The tech giant initially identified over 100 candidates,  spoke with several dozen, whittled the group to 20 and then narrowed that list even further.

The Christmas holiday is just 7 days away, but Americans still have plenty of shopping to do. According to a Consumer Reports poll, only 11 percent are completely finished buying gifts while 31 percent haven't even started yet. And about a third said buying for their spouse or significant other is the hardest person to shop for.


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