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The Fokker Chronicles



World Markets:
Europe was trading higher today led by electronics and telecom stocks. The German DAX was trading up nearly 1% on the heals of a higher German business confidence report. The CAC40 gained some momentum as well, leading most of Europe higher with a 1.25% gain. The Japanese Nikkei lost 0.41% as the yen reached three-year highs against the US dollar. US equities were trading down leading up to the open on a handful of earnings disappoints.

Lookout after the bell for Amazon(AMZN:NASD), Broadcom(BRCM:NASD), Electronic Arts(ERTS:NASD), and Flextronics(FLEX:NASD). On the economic frontier, Consumer Confidence figures will be released at 10amEDT and Bloomberg survey is looking for 98.50. Tomorrow the FOMC will release its verdict for monetary policy on interest rates.

Brokerage Chatter:
Lazard Freres downgraded TXU Corp.(TXU:NYSE) to sell. RBC Capital Markets downgraded Bank of New York(BK:NYSE) to underperform from sector perform. Smith Barney upgraded Micron(MU:NYSE) to buy from hold and increased its price target to $21 from $15 while UBS upped the stock to buy from Neutral and took up its target to $18 from $15. Louisiana Pacific(LPX:NYSE) was cut to hold from buy at Deutsche. Lehman upgraded Continental Airlines (CAL:NYSE) to overweight from equal weight. Legg Mason downgraded SunTrust Banks(STI:NYSE) to sell from hold. SG Cowen cut Baxter Intl(BAX:NYSE) to market perform from strong buy while Wachovia upgraded the stock to outperform. Friedman Billings downgraded Computer Associates(CA:NYSE) to market perform from outperform.

Financial Headlines:
Stories :
According to CNET News, a new computer virus has taken off. The mass-mailing computer virus known by various antivirus security firms as MyDoom, Novarg and an offshoot of the Mimail virus, arrives in your email posing with subject lines ranging from "Mail Delivery System," "Test" or "Mail Transaction Failed." The body of the e-mail contains an executable file and a statement such as: "The message contains Unicode characters and has been sent as a binary attachment.

Bloomberg newswires report yesterday that a subsidiary of Bear Stearns(BSC:NYSE), Bear Wagner specialists received a Wells Notice from the SEC.

Altera(ALTR:NASD) reported a penny better than expectations with revenues slightly below consensus.
Novellus(NVLS:NASD) beat by a penny and topped revenues. Guidance was disappointing on the gross margins and bookings growth.
Texas Instruments(TXN:NYSE) reported 3 pennies better on slightly higher revenues.
Caterpillar(CAT:NYSE) beat by $0.03 on revenues of $6.47 billion versus $5.49 billion consensus.
Countrywide(CFC:NYSE) reported 3 pennies better than First Call estimates.
SBC Comm(SBC:NYSE) reported inline with expectations.
Ingersoll-Rand(IR:NYSE) beat by $0.06.
Merck(MRK:NYSE) reported in line with consensus estimates.
Cummins(CUM:NYSE) beat by $0.09.
DuPont(DD:NYSE) beat by $0.04.
ON Semiconductor(ONNN:NASD) upped its guidance for the 4th quarter raising their sequential growth from 2-3% to 5%.
Xerox Corp(XRX:NYSE) beat by 4 cents on revenues of $4.29 billion versus $4.18 billion.
Beazer Homes(BZH:NYSE) beat by a mere $0.24 on revenues of $810.1 million versus consensus of $791.6 million.
McDonald's(MCD:NYSE) reported in line with expectations but topped revenues.
Silicon Labs(SLAB:NASD) beat by $0.12 and guided higher for next quarter.
Agilent(A:NYSE) boosted its outlook for the 1st quarter revenues.

Around the world in 80 ticks:
AP news reports that according to US and Malaysian security authorities, as a result of the US led invasion in Afghanistan following 9/11, an Al-Qaeda chemical and biological weapons program was interrupted in its early stages.

The Associated Press reports that the $4.5 million in loans that California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger borrowed for his campaign was apparently illegal. A judge ruled yesterday that those loans were illegal; breaking the mandate set out in Proposition 34 which restricts loans of greater than $100,000 and could be forced to repay the funds out of his own pocket.

In more political news, the Associated Press reported that the state lawmakers of Connecticut voted unanimously to form a committee for investigating its sitting governor and will review whether an impeachment is warranted. The committee will make history when it becomes the first state to ever investigate its own governor.

AP news reports that according to police authorities at Humberside Airport in northern England, a meat cleaver was confiscated from a man attempting to board a plane heading for Amsterdam and has been taken into custody.

According to Reuters, the once hit show for ABC television, "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" is eyeing a brief return to the airwaves with Regis Philbin once again taking the role of host but with the new title, "Super Millionaire." ABC plans to jazz it up from its original version by adding new life lines and potential winnings of up to $10 million. The show is scheduled for ABC's February sweeps lineup and will run five shows one hour in length.

Have a profitable day.


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