Government Shutdown Blocks New Beers, and 6 More Things You'll Want to Know Today
• OK, now, the federal government shutdown has gone too far: It's putting the kibosh on new craft beers. True, America is in no danger of hitting its Bud Light ceiling. However, with the closure of the obscure Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau -- which must approve new breweries, recipes and labels -- applications for any new brews are in limbo. Which means unless they dealt with the paperwork in advance, our nation's hip brewmasters won't be able to to supply us with Cranberry Mince Doppelbock, or whatever innovative new beverages they had on tap for the holiday season.
• In slightly more important news, President Obama is expected to officially nominate Janet Yellen to be the next Chair of the Federal Reserve at 3 p.m. Wednesday. Assuming Senate confirmation (which seems likely to be a smooth process), the monetary policy dove will become the first woman to control the world's most powerful central bank.
• Jos. A. Bank Clothiers (JOSB) likes the way Men's Wearhouse (MW) looks: Undervalued and vulnerable to a takeover after the boardroom brouhaha that led it to oust founder and Chairman George Zimmer. Jos. A. Bank is bidding $2.3 billion to buy its larger rival. The $48 a share deal is a 36 percent premium over Men's Wearhouse's closing price of $35.24 Tuesday. But Men's Wearhouse swiftly rejected the offer, saying it undervalues the company.
%VIRTUAL-article-sponsoredlinks%• A few weeks ago, DailyFinance reporter Bruce Watson warned us about the potential dangers of Chinese chicken to your health: But today, chicken in China may be harming your wealth -- if you have Yum Brands (YUM) in your portfolio. Yum reported disappointing earnings before the bell Wednesday, primarily due to poor sales numbers in China for KFC. The world's most populous nation accounts for 40 percent of Yum's profits, so no surprise, it's shares lost more than 8 percent by 10 a.m. The company also owns Taco Bell and Pizza Hut.
• Apple's sales of the new iPhone 5s and 5c have been impressive out of the gate, but the day those new devices were revealed to the public, Apple (AAPL) stock dropped. Why? The event included no news about new iPads (not to mention a lack of game-changing new gadgets). On Oct. 22, Apple will partially remedy that with a press event showing off the next iterations of its iPads.
• Craft brewers may be suffering, but some businesses are managing to benefit from the government shutdown. State parks, private museums and other venues are touting themselves as alternatives to closed federal destinations. And an insurance company that sells wedding policies is pitching those policies bu suggesting couples consider of all the nuptials planned to take place in national parks that just got unexpectedly canceled.
• And finally, here's a warning to anyone tempted to take advantage of other people's superstitions by buying a supposedly "haunted" house on the cheap: An infamous home can become a serious money pit -- even if you never once see anything that inspires you to call "Ghostbusters," "Ghost Hunters" or the Weekly World News.