The rattling of sabers as the U. S. reportedly prepares for a military strike on Syria in retaliation for the alleged use of chemical weapons by that country’s leadership on its own people overshadowed two major tech deals. Verizon (VZ, Fortune 500) will pay $130 billion to take over Vodafone, in the second largest merger ever; and Microsoft (MSFT, Fortune 500) will acquire Nokia’s (NOK) mobile phone business for $7.2 billion. Even stronger-than- expected manufacturing data only pushed the three major indexes up between 0.1 percent and 0.5 percent. CNNMoney reports the Dow gained +23.65 points, +0.16 percent, to close at 14,833.96. The Nasdaq moved up +0.63 percent, +22.74 points to end the day at 3,612.61, while the S&P gained +0.42 percent, +6.8 points, to close at 1,639.77. The Yahoo! Finance Manufactured Housing Composite fell -0.94 percent to end today’s session at 1855. Housing stocks we track closed mixed or even. Louisiana Pacific Industries posted the largest gain of stocks we track, +1.60 percent, +0.24, to end the day at 15.20. Skyline Corp. fell the most of tracked stocks, falling -5.03 percent, -0.24, to end at 4.53. Affiliated Managers Group 175.66 +1.34 (+0.77%). Cavco Industries 51.14 -1.40 (-2.66%). Clayton Homes, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, as well as MH home-building, lending and other housing suppliers parent company Berkshire Hathaway 167,933 +943.00 (+0.56%). Deer Valley remained unchanged at 0.65. Drew Industries, Inc. 41.95 -0.01 (-0.02%). Equity LifeStyle Properties 34.51 -0.24 (-0.69%). Liberty Homes remained unchanged at 0.60, while Nobility Homes stayed at 0.65. Patrick Industries 26.99 -0.07 (-0.25%). Sun Communities, Inc. 42.19 -0.78 (-1.82%). Third Avenue Value Fund (Aug. 30) 54.87 -0.11 (-0.20%). UMH Properties, Inc. remained unchanged at 9.60. Universal Forest Products, Inc. 36.52 -0.92 (-2.46%).
(Graphic credit: CNNMoney and RealTick)