US factory activity dipped slightly in November. The Institute for Supply Management reported its manufacturing index reached 58.7 last month. A reading above 50 means the industry saw some expansion, but the November number is lower than reported in October.
The data is in: Black Friday and the overall retail spending over the four-day holiday weekend was down 11% this year compared to last. The average shopper spent $380.95 over the weekend, a drop of 6.4% from the same weekend in 2013.
In M&A news, Intel has bought PasswordBox, a Montreal-based password management company. The move is an effort for Intel to boost its security products.
Besides shopping deals, tree-trimming, jingle bells, family parties and other festivities, the holiday season means it's Girl Scout cookie time. And, it may be easier than ever to nab those Samoas and Thin Mints - the Girl Scout organization has approved a mobile platform for online cookie sales.