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5 Things You Need to Know Before the Stock Market Opens

BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- The final trading day of 2011, which will decide whether the S&P 500 ends the year up or down, leads your quick fix of company, market, economic and investing news for Friday, Dec. 30.

Friday's 5 Biggest Stories

Stock futures are fluctuating. Where will the S&P 500 end the year? Place your bets now. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Bloomberg</a>]

Raise your hand if you expected the IMF to tell Greece that a 50% haircut on its bonds wouldn't be enough. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">WSJ</a>]

It's a good thing former Hewlett-Packard (HPQ - Get Report) CEO Mark Hurd says it's riddled with inaccuracies, because Gloria Allred's letter detailing his alleged sexual harassment makes him look pretty bad. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Thomson Reuters</a>]

China's manufacturing activity contracted again in December. Is another reserve ratio cut not far behind? [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Bloomberg</a>]

After a very ugly public mess, TCW and Jeff Gundlach's DoubleLine Capital settle their beef privately. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">DealBook</a>]

Company News

Only a few more days until the NYSE says "so long" to shares of bankrupt AMR Corp. (AMR). [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">WSJ</a>]

No surprise here: Bank of America (BAC - Get Report) is on pace to be the worst performing Dow stock of the year. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Bloomberg</a>]

After detailing some its store closures, Sears Holdings (SHLD - Get Report) has its debt cut further into junk status territory by Fitch Ratings. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">CBS</a>]


Complacency is haunting the bond market. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Global Macro Monitor</a>]

Money market funds are seeing their biggest inflows despite zero yields. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">FT</a>]

Investment Strategy

Hedge funds fudging their quarterly return numbers? That doesn't sound like them at all. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">WSJ</a>]

Something's gotta give in 2012, but what will it be? [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">MarketWatch</a>]

Odds and Ends

You have to love it when author Michael Lewis playfully skewers his alma mater, although this time it's not Goldman! [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Bloomberg</a>]

Happy New Year! Here's hoping for a happy and healthy 2012 to you and yours. Here's the only New Year's-related video I could think of, courtesy of U2. [<a href="" target="blank" rel="nofollow">YouTube</a>]

-- Written by Robert Holmes in Boston.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Robert Holmes.

>To follow Robert Holmes on Twitter, go to

>To submit a news tip, send an email to:
Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.

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