The Day Ahead: Holiday Cheer Comes Early

On National Black Friday Creep Day (Thanksgiving), I engaged in a number of retail tours -- and these have put me in a jovial mood. Yes, out of 20 people I queried at a local Target (TGT), only three had "heard of" the fiscal cliff -- which had triggered an abundance of doomsday thoughts regarding first-half 2013 consumer spending. But forget that. I will even go so far as to temporarily sweep under the rug these ninja-like shopping tendencies in the wee hours of Black Friday. Perhaps I'll bring my Hurricane Sandy hypothesis front and center -- that is, the storm is a downside risk to spending plans, but only for those on the East Coast.

No, fine folks, it was the chat with Santa Claus in front of a Lord & Taylor that left the largest impression on me Thursday. You see, Santa had some good tidings to share on the stock market even though it is currently staring down the barrel of a gun, and in the end he sounded a touch more positive than I would have expected. Since I advise doing nothing to your portfolio in a holiday-shorted trading session, every non-holiday piece of attention has to be assigned to navigating the remainder of November....565 more words left in this article. To read them, just click below and try Real Money FREE for 14 days.

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