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The Dow Now: Cisco Improves After Successfully Making Its Case on Analyst Day

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Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard were also up on the day.

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL US stocks edged up in mid-Monday trading as investors returned their attention to fiscal cliff talks in Washington.

On Sunday, President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner met at the White House to work out a plan to avoid the series of automatic tax increases and spending cuts set to kick in at the start of the new year. However, neither party disclosed details of the meeting.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) was up 0.25% to 13,187.45 points as of 12:08 p.m. EST.

Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) led all Dow gainers, surging 3.59% to $14.30 on reported rumors that activist investor Carl Icahn was keen to build a stake in the struggling PC giant. Also of note is the revelation by Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) CEO Michael Dell that his company had considered acquiring scandal-plagued Autonomy but thought it was "obviously overpriced."

After the company's analyst day last Friday, in which CEO John Chambers maintained its financial outlook on the company at 5% to 7% per annum long-term growth, Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) increased 2.06% to $19.73 on the day.

"Cisco made a compelling case for how the Company can fill a void in the IT world, grow its recurring revenue stream, and continue to deliver profitable growth in the process," wrote Topeka Capital analyst Brian White in a client note. "We believe the stock continues to represent an attractive value."

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) also improved 1.64% to $26.89 while McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) advanced 1.27% to $89.60 after it reported that global same-store sales for November rose 2.4%. Even in the US, sales gained when analysts had predicted a drop.

JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) slid 0.66% to $42.28. Earlier today, the Bank of England and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. released a joint paper that offered contingency plans in the event of the failure of a complex, systemically-crucial institution such as JPMorgan. The report suggests the need for tighter regulations, which may have dampened the spirits of investors.

Home Depot (NYSE:HD) also retreated 1.22% to $63.67.

Twitter: @sterlingwong
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