5 Things You Need to Know Before the Stock Market Opens

BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- The best monthly rally in 37 years leads your quick fix of company, market, economic and investing news for Friday, Oct. 28.

Friday's 5 Biggest Stories

This month's 14% rally on the S&P 500 will rank as the ninth best month for U.S. equities ever and the biggest monthly gain in 37 years. Bespoke Investment

Given how great this rally has been, investors need a sobering point of view on the big picture. Market Anthropology

Speaking of wet blankets, Fitch Ratings says that the approved 50% haircut on Greek debt qualifies as a default event. Just don't tell the sovereign CDS holders. WSJ

And don't look now, but MF Global ( MF) is collapsing like a little Lehman and could be a canary in the coal mine. CNBC

Hewlett-Packard ( HPQ) balks at spinning off its PC business due to the price, putting flip-floppers across the globe to shame. WSJ

Quote of the Day

"No one actually owns stock except corporate insiders, ETFs and fast-asleep elephantine mutual fund companies who would sooner hit the snooze button on the alarm than actually shake up a board of directors," blogger and financial advisor Josh Brown on the egregious pay package of First Solar's ( FSLR) outgoing CEO Rob Gillette. The Reformed Broker

Company News

Samsung tops Apple ( AAPL) in smartphone sales in the last quarter. Before everyone freaks out, remember that was before the iPhone 4S launch. Bloomberg

People may be buying phones, but it looks like fewer are shelling out for Whirlpool ( WHR) appliances. MarketWatch

As if people didn't have enough reasons to love Jamie Dimon, JPMorgan Chase ( JPM) won't slap customers with a debit card fee. Chicago Tribune


Is the S&P 500 rally a melt-up, the likes of which we haven't seen since Long-Term Capital Management failed? Global Macro Monitor

The second installment that rips to shreds the popular proposals floating around for mortgage principal writedowns. Stone Street Advisors

For all of the deal euphoria in Europe, it's easy to forget how crappy the global economy is. For example, I give you France. Bloomberg Businessweek

Investment Strategy

Perhaps all fund managers need to come with this sort of disclaimer. Random Roger

If you were a bullish investor at the beginning of October after September's drop, you deserve props. Dynamic Hedge

Odds and Ends

For a World Series that many expected to be a snoozer for ratings, this has actually been one of the best baseball contests ever. NYT

It's Friday. It's snowing in Boston. Let's warm up with this solid track from U.K. band Muse. YouTube

-- Written by Robert Holmes in Boston.

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

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Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.

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