(Information on cruise line companies and Hungary's mounting financial troubles updated in today's Hot Trends article.)
NEW YORK (
) -- "Cruise packages" is a hot search topic today as travelers look for year-end vacation deals.
recently announced its plans to offer vacation cruise packages that include privately guided tours on Mediterranean or Alaskan shores.
hit a 52-week high of $47.36 yesterday while cruise line peer
also reached its year-high yesterday, spiking to $47.22.
HSBC global research analyst Ben O'Toole recently initiated coverage of Carnival with an overweight rating and $51 price target. He said that demand for cruises has been improving, especially in Europe, and that the operators are further helped by slow supply growth.
"Hungary" is a heavily searched topic today after Fitch Ratings downgraded the country's sovereign credit rating to a BBB-.
Today the Hungarian government passed a 2011 budget bill that some fear may weaken public finances. Concerns over the country's high debt load are growing, and the country is currently vulnerable to an economic collapse.
"The downgrade of Hungary's ratings reflects a material worsening in the underlying medium term budget position," Fitch head of emerging Europe Ed Parker said, "while relatively high levels of public, external and domestic foreign currency bank debt leave the country vulnerable to negative shocks."
"Electric cars" is a hot search topic today following news that
is planning to use
lithium-ion batteries in a test version of its electric car.
While Honda already has a deal with
to supply lithium-ion batteries for its hybrid and plug-in cars, Honda will likely use Toshiba's battery packs in its all-electric cars, which require more power.
The Japan-based automaker joins
in efforts to meet firmer government emissions guidelines.
started shipping its new electric 2011 Chevrolet Volt last week, while sales of the electric Nissan Leaf began earlier this month.
"Mortgage relief" is a trending search topic today after the U.S. Department of Treasury released data on Wednesday showing that about 774,000 homeowners have dropped out of President Obama's foreclosure-relief program as of last month. The program was put in place earlier this year to help homeowners at risk of foreclosure.
The National Association of Realtors reported that existing-home sales rose 5.6% in November to a better-than-expected seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.68 million units.
While the rate improved, it remained 27.9% below the cyclical peak of 6.49 million units in November 2009.
The chatter on Main Street (a.k.a. Google) is always of interest to investors on Wall Street. Thus, each day, TheStreet compiles the stories that are trending on Google, and highlights the news that could make stocks move.
-- Written by Theresa McCabe in Boston.
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