Nasdaq 5000, Google vs. Apple and the $63m Cuban phenom

Stocks were mixed at midday Tuesday as the Dow (^DJI) and S&P 500 (^GSPC) touched new highs and chatter grew louder about “Nasdaq 5000 (^IXIC).” If things stay the way they are (more or less) right now, today will not be the day to pop the champagne over the Nasdaq.

Yahoo Finance’s Jeff Macke says it’s inevitable and he’s got his bet in for March 6.

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Yahoo Finance Senior Columnist Michael Santoli argues that even when the Nasdaq does hit that 5000 level, “I don’t think that there’s much to this number aside from the historical landmark.”

As for the broader market, investors seemed to shrug off day one of Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s testimony before the Senate in which, depending on how you parse her words, she may have suggested interest rates would stay near zero past the June FOMC meeting where most had thought she would announce the first hike in years.

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A seal of approval from the European Central Bank with regard to the Greek bailout plan couldn’t move U.S. stocks much either.

No new tax pledges
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is expected to backtrack on his “no new taxes” pledge thanks to budget issues plaguing his state. Yahoo Finance’s Aaron Task, our resident New Jersian, disagrees with such reports. “There’s no way Chris Christie is going to call to raise taxes because if he does, whatever fleeting chances he has at becoming president go out the window… Even if he did, the state legislature would knock it down.”

Google vs. Apple
Google (GOOGL) has struck a deal with wireless carriers to have its Google Wallet come preloaded on Android phones. It’s the latest salvo in the war for mobile dominance and a direct challenge to Apple (AAPL) Pay.

Task notes that this is a case of “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.” Previously, wireless carriers forced Google Wallet users to download a separate app to reap the benefits of the technology. “Now I think the wireless carriers said ‘we need some leverage against Apple Pay,’” he says, “which looks like it’s starting to gain some traction.”

$ 63m Cuban Phenom
In the first such move since the thawing of U.S. / Cuban relations, the Boston Red Sox have signed 19-year-old Cuban wunderkind Yoan Moncada to a contract that will cost them $ 63 million. While not completely free of bureaucratic red tape, the Obama administration has made these kinds of transactions easier.

What else do these eased restrictions impact? Obviously Cuban cigars and vacations, but Jeff Macke remains unimpressed. “Unless you need a DeSoto that hasn’t been repaired since 1958 then I’m not sure Cuba is going to be exporting much of anything other than fun.”

What do you think? Will an easing of Cuban relations bring anything other than good baseball players to the states? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter @YahooFinance.

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