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The Fokker Chronicles



World Markets:
Europe trading higher today led by the German Dax which posted nearly 1% in midday gains. The Japanese Nikkei added 1.12% and the Hang Seng followed closely behind, finishing with 0.86% in gains.

Big week for earnings as over one third of the S&P 500 will be reporting their results. Lookout after the closing bell today for earnings from Altera(ALTR:NASD), Silicon Labs(SLAB:NASD), and Texas Instruments(TXN:NYSE). Earnings of note tomorrow include AT&T(T:NYSE), SBC Comm(SBC:NYSE), Amgen(AMGN:NASD) and Amazon(AMZN:NASD). Leading Indicators is due out at 10amEDT and the Bloomberg Survey is looking for down 0.1%. Semi Book to Bill report will be released after the close today.

Brokerage Chatter:
Merrill Lynch upgrades Synopsys(SNPS:NASD) to buy from neutral and upgraded Cadence(CDN:NYSE) to neutral from sell. Bear Stearns upgraded Wachovia(WB:NYSE) to outperform from underperform. Deutsche downgraded Lear Corp.(LEA:NYSE) to hold from buy. Micron(MU:NYSE) was downgraded at Bernstein to an underperform from market perform and cut its price target to $7 from $9. Bank of America(BAC:NYSE) was downgraded at Bear Stearns to underperform from outperform.

RBC Capital upgraded the Oil Service Group to an overweight rating and individually raised Patterson Energy(PTEN:NASD), Nabors(NBR:NYSE) and BJ Services(BJS:NYSE) to outperform from sector perform. UBS making some positive chatter re Cisco Systems(CSCO:NASD) stating its expectation that the company will report EPS in line but revenues that could hit the higher end of its revenue guidance. Merrill raised its rating for the Wireless sector to overweight from equal weight and downgraded the Semis to equal weight from overweight.

Financial Headlines:
Stories :
According to an exclusive London Times interview with US Treasury Secretary Snow, comments implied a rise in US interest rates should be expected 'soon'.

Bear Stearns(BSC:NYSE) plans to file for a $5 billion shelf offering. Merrill Lynch(MER:NYSE) also announced it will file for $25 billion in a shelf offering.

NY Times article suggests TiVo(TIVO:NASD) will be threatened by much less expensive products and more integrated products. An analyst with the Yankee Group was quoted as saying that "this is the last stand for the stand-alone boxes; this is a dying product."

Goldman Sachs(GS:NYSE) announced that it has agreed to purchase 100% of the stock of privately held Cogentrix Energy Inc., an independent power producer based in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Citigroup(C:NYSE) beat consensus by $0.05
3M Company(MMM:NYSE) beat expectations by $0.04 and guided its 4th quarter and 2003 above consensus estimates.
Southwest Air(LUV:NYSE) reported in line.
Lexmark(LXK:NYSE) topped consensus by $0.09 and guided its 4th quarter above consensus.
Check Point Software(CHKP:NASD) reported 3rd quarter results in line with expectations.

Around the world in 80 ticks:

Reuters reports that in a new audiotape aired Saturday, a voice purported to be Osama bin Laden vowed more suicide attacks "inside and outside" the U.S. and also threatened the nations that are helping in the occupation of Iraq.

USA today reports that government prosecutors are considering filing a felony charge against a 20-year-old college student from Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C. who is suspected of placing box cutters, bleach, matches, and modeling clay aboard two Southwest Airlines jets in New Orleans and Houston. Cleaning crews found notes left in the bags stating the items were left to expose faults in airport security.

Moscow Times reports that England's Scotland Yard has thwarted a suspected plot to assassinate Russian President Vladimir Putin, following the arrests of two renegade Russian intelligence agents in London.

According to the Washington Post, a report claims that thirty percent fewer Arabs studied in the US last year compared with three years prior. The Bush Administration's 9/11 policy that has tightened visa restrictions along with the treatment of terrorism suspects is to blame according to a team of Arab intellectuals that released its report in Jordan.

Reuters reported that according to a secret letter revealed from Princess Diana's former butler, she had made a chilling prediction forecasting her own death in a car crash just 10 months before she died in Paris.

Have a profitable day.


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