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Quote of the Day

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”

-Henry Ford, who on this day in 1913 changing automobile manufacturing forever.

December 1st – This Day in Stock Market History

December 1st, 1913 – Henry Ford installs the first assembly line to assemble a complete car in its Highland Park Michigan assembly plant. The new technology would make it possible for Ford to produce a car in just 90 minutes.

Ford first assembly line

Ford had been using a moving assembly line since October 7th, 1913, but only for portions of the build process. December 1st, 1913 was the first day Ford’s moving assembly line would be able to produce a complete car.

The technology also made ford much more efficient, and cars available to the masses.

Ford’s model T sold for $850 before the assembly line (Equal to about $21,500 in today’s dollars), but after it was operational, they lowered the price to just $300 dollars (Equal to about $7,500 in today’s dollars).

Source: Ford – 100 Years of the Assembly Line

December 1st, 1998 – Oil giant Exxon agrees to purchase Mobil for $80 billion.

New York Times' coverage of Exxon purchasing Mobil
New York Times’ coverage of Exxon purchasing Mobil

The combination of Exxon and Mobil would create the world’s largest company at the time, and recombine two pieces of the former Standard Oil monopoly.

The new company would be responsible for over 15 percent of all oil sold around the world at the time.

December 1st, 2008 – As the financial crisis continues to worsen, a recession is officially declared by the National Bureau of Economic Research.  Stocks post their 12th worst day in history; the Dow falls 7.7%, down 679 points, to close down 38.6% for the year and down 42.5% from its record close of 14164.53 hit on October 9th, 2007.

Bank stocks were hit the hardest on the day. JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs both saw their shares decline around 17% on this day alone! The oil markets were also hit, with oil falling 10% to close below $50 a barrel.

Also on this day, as a flight to safety commenced, US Treasury bonds would see tremendous buying pressure.

The 10-year note would see its yield drop as low as 2.65%, and the 30-year Treasury bond would reach a yield of 3.18%, at the time these were record lows.

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