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Stocks to Watch: American Express, AT&T, Google, Wal-Mart


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Stocks to watch for Monday, October 23

  • American Express (AXP) is set to release results. American Express's third-quarter net income is expected to show a decline, but Wall Street takes a bright view of its prospects. The company is expected to report earnings of $938.9 million, or 76 cents a share on revenue of $6.8 billion. For the year-earlier period, American Express reported net of $1.03 billion, or 82 cents a share, on $6.07 billion in revenue. But the year-ago quarter included profit from discontinued operations from the spin-off of its Ameriprise unit. Excluding Ameriprise, the company earned $865 million, or 69 cents a share, in third-quarter of 2005.
  • Amgen (AMGN) will post higher third-quarter results on Monday that will once again include sales of its anemia drug Aranesp that top $1 billion. The company is seen posting earnings of 97 cents a share for the quarter ended Sept. 30. Revenue is expected to come in at $3.61 billion vs. $3.15 billon last year.
  • AT&T (T) is scheduled to report earnings. AT&T is expected to earn 58 cents a share on revenue of $21.3 billion
  • Ford Motor (F) leads off earnings reports from the Big Three automakers. Ford is expected to turn in a loss of 61 cents a share on sales of $32.03 billion, with the North American business forecast to take another big hit.
  • Google (GOOG) shares picked up 48 cents Friday to end at $460.15, extending their 7.9% increase during the day. Late Thursday, the company said its quarterly profit almost doubled on stronger sales. A number of Wall Street analysts raised their price targets on Google's stock and three set price targets of $600 for the shares.
  • Lumera (LMRA) topped volume movers during the late session Friday, and closed down 3.8% at $6.41. In the past week, the stock jumped 33% after the electronics manufacturer said that tests of its millimeter-wave wireless bridge were successful. The system allows for the transmission of large amounts of data through a variety of high-speed telecommunications networks, the company said.
  • News Corp's (NWS) shareholders approved a "poison pill" takeover-defense plan, enhancing Murdoch's leverage over the media giant's second-biggest holder.
  • Tribune's (TRB) auction is attracting interest from groups of private-equity firms. They may be the media concern's best hope as it tries to sell itself amid weak results and a divided board.
  • Wal-Mart (WMT) named an outsider as the new head of its China operations, hiring a regional executive from pan-Asian retail giant Dairy Farm International Holdings.
  • Western Union (WU) files its first report since spinning off from First Data (FDC) earlier this month.

Market Update

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -0.13%, Nikkei +0.82%, Sensex -0.89%, Taiwan +0.01% and Shanghai -1.71%.
  • A quick check across the pond finds mostly red CAC -0.09%, DAX -0.04%, FTSE -0.14%, and Swiss Mkt +0.12%.
  • Crude oil is trading -0.71 to 58.62 while gold is +0.54 to 591.0 this morning.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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