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What's happening with F: Analysts will pay close attention to December vehicle sales data report on Wednesday. Last month, the report was positive and illustrated that consumers were shrugging off concern over the looming fiscal cliff. All of the major auto makers reported strong November sales, with Ford (F) reporting November sales up 6.5% versus 2011. The company had strong demand for its more fuel-efficient vehicles, and November was its best month ever for sales of electric cars. After last month’s positive results, Ford stock accelerated strongly to the upside.

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What's happening with MOS: After a steep sell-off between September and the middle of November, Mosaic stock has been trading sharply higher over the past month. There has been a significant amount of investor concern regarding its large exposure in China and India, where growth has been slowing. However, these regions could turn into a positive for the company, with analysts expecting to see new contracts being signed in the next few months. The company’s last earnings report came on October 1, with Mosaic widely missing estimates for $1.15 a share by reporting just $1.01. Goldman Sachs recently advised its clients to look for any weakness following the company’s fiscal second quarter report as a buying opportunity.

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What's happening with M: Every month there is a lot of attention paid to chain store sales data, but this report will garner added attention because of the holiday season. Retail plays such a huge role in the nation’s economy and the chain store sales reading is a good barometer for the overall retail sector. Macy’s (M) stock was a strong performer during the latter part of 2012, but it ran into trouble in mid-November and has slid since. The first issue weighing down M was investor fear over the looming fiscal cliff, which hurt most sectors, but it has been compounded for Macy’s on reports of 2012 being the weakest holiday shopping season since 2008.

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What's happening with FDO: Discount retailer Family Dollar (FDO) will report its fiscal first quarter results on January 3. Going into its first quarter report, analysts are expecting to see earnings of $0.75 per share, up from $0.68 during the same period last year. The stock has been strong over the past two years as the economic crisis created a more cost-conscious consumer, but has recently sold off in sympathy to its main competitor Dollar General (DG). Earlier this month Dollar General reported better than expected earnings, but warned that it is seeing tougher competition and a more cautious consumer. This pulled the entire discount retail sector down and Family Dollar with it. Family Dollar has been capitalizing on current trends perfectly and used the current economic climate as an opportunity to expand its business. Family Dollar expects to see earnings grow in the double-digit range over the next 3 to 5 years and expects to open around 500 new stores during fiscal 2013.

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What's happening with DEO: Diageo plc (DEO), like all spirits-makers will see a seasonal boost in sales during the New Year’s Eve holiday. This should not factor in the stock's pricing, but the market for adult beverages has been a growth industry in recent years due to strong growth in alcohol sales worldwide.  Diageo has enjoyed a strong year in 2012, but has recently seen some profit taking after hitting a new 52-week high on December 10. Over the past 13 years, beer sales have lost market share to liquor sales each year, and Diageo has benefitted due to its highly-diverse product line. Diageo thinks there is more room for expansion in the industry as demonstrated by paying $2.1 billion for a majority stake in United Spirits in November.

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