Closing Bell: 08.22.07

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Closing Bell brought to you by the Financial Times.
More final hour wackiness capped a small but significant market rally today. The big three U.S. Indexes (Dow, S&P, Nasdaq) finished up 1%. All ten S&P tracked sectors were trading higher at market close.
Citibank, Bank of America, Wachovia and JPMorgan all borrowed $500 million from the Fed discount window but were adamant about the Fed needing to keep up the rate cuts in order to sustain the rally.
The housing market saw a drop in the number of applications for U.S. residential mortgages for the first time in three weeks. Toll Brothers posted a sharp quarterly decline and refused to give guidance, but rallied to finish up 5% (hey, if it’s not going under…). Lowe’s was upgraded by JPMorgan and UBS and rallied 3%.
One of the reasons stocks rallied was a break from the lull in merger activity. Some highlights include the foreplay of TD Ameritrade and E*Trade, who keep dancing with each other, but this time may finally seal the deal. Dubai "loves U.S. brands," and overpaid for another U.S. asset in its purchase of a 9.5% stake in MGM.
Check out FT Alphaville for more market goodness.

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