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Quote of the Day

Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.

-President John F. Kennedy

November 22nd – This Day in Stock Market History – JFK Assassination Closes Stock Markets

November 22nd, 1963 – President Kennedy is assassinated. U.S stock exchanges would close within 30 minutes of the news.

Although the exchanges rushed to close, they could not beat the heavy volume of trading that immediately flooded the market. The Dow Jones Industrial Average would sink 21.16 points, down 2.89%.

Stock markets would remain closed for Monday November 25th, and would reopen Tuesday November 26th.

A couple years ago, CNBC did an interview with Art Cashin, who was working on the floor of the NYSE the day Kennedy was shot. He describes what it was like on the trading floor that day:

Cashin: Selling ‘heavy & hectic’ after JFK’s assassination from CNBC.

November 22nd, 1985 – Microsoft and Apple sign secret licensing agreement.

For years, Apple was concerned that Microsoft was stealing Macintosh’s ideas to use in its Window interface. But at the time Microsoft software was vital for the Macintosh platform, without it owners of Macintosh computers would have limited options. When Apple threatened legal action in 1985, Bill Gates threatened to remove all Microsoft software from Apple, something that Apple could not afford.

So on this day in 1985, the two companies signed a secret licensing deal, which gave Microsoft royalty-free rights to elements of the graphical display technology that was developed for Macintosh. The agreement was signed by Bill Gates and Apple chairman John Sculley, who had just forced out his former friend Steve Jobs from the company. Part of the agreement read: “Microsoft acknowledges that the visual displays in [Excel, Windows, Word and Multiplan] are derivative works of the visual displays generated by Apple’s Lisa and Macintosh graphic user interface programs.

However the agreement would not keep the two companies from legal trouble later on. On March 17th, 1988 Apple would file a lawsuit against Microsoft for copyright infringement with its graphical interface in a future version of Windows. Apple argued that the agreement was only for Windows 1.0, Microsoft thought it was for all future versions of the software. The lawsuit would be in court through 1994 before finally being decided mostly in Microsoft’s favor. But it was not without multiple appeals, some of which did not go Microsoft’s way. For example, in March of 1989, one court had ruled in favor of Apple, and Microsoft’s stock tumbled 27% in one day.

Source: Hard Drive: Bill Gates and the Making of the Microsoft Empire

Best November 22nd in Dow Jones Industrial Average History

1920 – Up 4.21%, 3.12 points.

Worst November 22nd in Dow Jones Industrial Average History

1937 – Down 5.20%, 6.26 points.

Read of the Day

This infographic is a few years old, but has some great early history of Apple and Microsoft (Source):


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