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PODCAST: Aftershocks for HP, early rumbles for Thanksgiving shopping

This weekend marks the start of an important season for retailers. But there could be a few speedbumps in store.

U.S. prosecutors have filed their biggest-ever case of insider trading. Here's the allegation: SAC Capital Advisors, a hedge fund, got early warning about the failure of an Alzheimer's drug in clinical trials. That info let the fund sell its holdings in the companies behind the drug, and reap $276 million.

Greece's major creditors -- from European governments and from the International Monetary Fund -- have failed to agree on the terms for Greece's next bailout. A meeting in Brussels broke down late last night, after almost twelve hours of heated and ultimately fruitless debate.

New claims for unemployment  fell last week by 41,000 -- though officials say it's still temporarily elevated by Superstorm Sandy. U.S. manufacturing in the first part of November is expanding at its fastest pace in five months.

Yesterday's big morning news was HP, claiming that accounting fraud by a company it acquired cost it as much as nine billion dollars. Now the former CEO of that company, Autonomy, is firing back, saying HP's allegations are completely false.
                          
And In the on-again, off-again saga of Hostess, this morning's news is... Off again. The company says talks with its bakers union have failed, and it's proceeding to sell off the company's brands and assets. The corporate vultures are already circling.

Walmart is hoping the National Labor Relations Board will give it something to be thankful for this week. The company wants to stop hundreds of worker protests that are scheduled to take place this week on Black Friday. Walmart filed a complaint with the board to make that happen.

As the botox market among middle-aged women plateaus, one New York doctor is courting a new customer base. Dr. Jack Berdy is now marketing "pokertox" -- for those serious players who desire the ultimate poker-face. According to the Huffington Post, it'll keep you from raising your eyebrows when you get a good card, or literally give you a stiff upper lip when you're trying to bluff.

And finally, two weeks after the election, Mitt Romney may be fading from the headlines. But he's become a hot internet meme. Aided and abetted by photo-sharing services like Instagram and websites like Buzzfeed, Romney-tracking is definitely becoming a thing:

"Mitt Romney goes for a walk with a towel."
"Mitt Romney fills up his gas-tank."
And yesterday: "Mitt Romney goes to Disneyland."

We've been reminded since November 6th that losing a presidential election is one of the most devastating things a person can go through. But wasn't it John Lennon who said: "An Internet hero is something to be?" Something like that.

About the author

Jeff Horwich is the interim host of Marketplace Morning Report and a sometime-Marketplace reporter.

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