A big week in mergers and acquisitions

Policymakers finalized three multibillion-dollar acquisitions this week as markets got off to a late start due to the Labor Day holiday.

Microsoft (MSFT) has agreed to pay $7.2 billion to buy Nokia’s mobile phone business, looking to pose a greater challenge to Apple, Google and Samsung. Just as important as the deal itself is that Microsoft is also acquiring Nokia (NOK) CEO Stephen Elop. He is an immediate favorite to succeed Steve Ballmer, who announced last week that he plans to retire as Microsoft CEO within the year.

All three major averages fell more than one percent last week, with the Nasdaq down 1.9 percent. It was the fourth straight weekly loss for the Dow. For August as a whole, the Dow fell 4.5 percent, its worst performance in 15 months.

Verizon Communications (VZ) has made the third-largest acquisition in the company’s history. As expected, it agreed to buy the 45% stake in Verizon Wireless held by British telecommunications company Vodaphone (VOD).

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The $130 billion price tag was higher than expected, but the deal gives Verizon full control of the wireless company with 100 million subscribers. Despite the size of the deal, it is not expected to have an immediate impact on these subscribers.

JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Morgan Stanley (MS), Bank of America (BAC) and Barclays (BARC) advised Verizon on this transaction. The banks are expected to split advisory fees of up to $250 million.

In its third major deal, consumer products company Jarden (JAH) has agreed to buy privately held Yankee Candle, best known for its scented candles. The value of this transaction is almost USD 1.8 billion.

CBS (CBS) and Time Warner Cable (TWC) have ended a bitter toll battle, ending a month-long blackout of CBS for many viewers in New York, Los Angeles and Dallas. Terms were not disclosed, but analysts say CBS has met expectations for higher rates.

And if the United States decides to continue a military attack on Syria, it will likely use Tomahawk cruise missiles. Their manufacturer is Raytheon (RTN).

Finally, it is the first trading day of September, which is traditionally the worst month of the year for the market. Investors should prepare for a bumpy road ahead.

Produced by Drew Trachtenberg