The Fokker Chronicles
World markets are firmer today following better than expected Cisco(CSCO:NASD) earnings last night. The CAC40 was the leading gainer posting 1.05%. Asian markets on the other hand were dismal at best. A few bad apples such as Rohm Co. lowering its profit forecast and China's Legend Group the recipient of broker downgrades led the Nikkei down 2.63% and the Hang Seng lost 2.32%. US equity futures tacked on gains after the 4pmEDT bell sounded in New York that should be factored into on the opening of trading this morning. Positive economic data should help add some additional backdrop to the opening of trading this morning. Check out Brian Reynolds for more on that.
After the bell lookout for earnings results from Nvidia(NVDA:NASD) and Pixar(PIXR:NASD). Merrill Lynch will be hosting its annual technology conference today, BEA Systems(BEAS) is expected to be on hand. Earnings front is very light tomorrow however on the economic frontier quite a different story. Lookout for data on the Unemployment rRate, Hourly Earnings, Change in nonfarm and manufacturing payrolls, Wholesale Inventories and Consumer Credit.
UBS upgraded Cisco Systems(CSCO:NASD) to outperform from market perform and raised its price target to $28 from $22. Merrill Lynch upgraded T.Rowe Price(TROW:NASD) to buy from neutral. Goldman Sachs cut Gucci(GUC:NYSE) to in line from outperform. United Systems Tech(UTSI:NASD) was downgraded at Morgan Stanley to equal weight from overweight however raised its price target to $34.56 from $28.50.
Bear Stearns upgraded Anheuser-Busch(BUD:NYSE) to outperform from peer perform. Legg Mason upgraded Priceline(PCLN:NASD) to buy from hold. Solomon Brothers upped Marriott(MAR:NYSE) to buy from hold and raised its target to $52 from $42. Solly also removed Starwood Hotels(HOT:NYSE) from its recommended list and added Marriott in its place.
On the interest rate front, the Bank of England raised its key bench mark rate by 1/4 point to 3.75%. The European Central Bank left its rates unchanged as expected.
Bloomberg newswires report that Treasury Secretary Snow making comments at an economic club in DC last night said he felt the U.S. economy is in 'real turnaround' and further said that if GDP growth could reach 4%, US jobs would see a pickup.
According to Bloomberg Newswires, New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer might be working out a deal with Janus Capital(JNS:NYSE), Strong Capital Management, Bank One(ONE:NYSE) and Bank of America(BAC:NYSE) to settle accusations into improper trading.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Alliance Capital(AC:NYSE) has joined the party of mutual fund transgressors. The SEC issued AC a Wells notice yesterday alleging that the company permitted some investors to market time their mutual funds.
Chicago Mercantile(CME:NYSE) holders plan to sell 2.37 million shares in a secondary offering of Class A stock.
Cisco Systems(CSCO:NASD) beat street estimates by 2 pennies on better revenues. Revenues were guided higher sequentially by 1-3% despite some analysts looking for slightly higher guidance.
Qualcomm(QCOM:NASD) reported in line with street estimates and inline results on their revenues. Guidance for their December quarter was slightly better than expected.
Fox Entertainment (FOX:NYSE) beat by $0.16
Devon Energy(DVN:NYSE) beat by $0.27.
Clorox(CLX:NYSE) reported in line results.
Wal-Mart(WMT:NYSE) October comps were up 4.5% while company guidance was +3.0 to 5.0%
Sears, Roebuck(S:NYSE) October comps were down 2.7% versus estimates ranging from 1-5% gain.
XM Satellite(XMSR:NASD) beat consensus estimates by 5 cents.
Gap Inc(GPS:NYSE) gave upside preannouncement for its 3rd quarter.
Around the world in 80 ticks:
The New York Times is reporting that as part of a force rotation program in Iraq and Kuwait, the Pentagon alerted 43,000 Reserve and National Guard troops for the possibility of year-long duty. According to senior Pentagon officials, this should help to reduce the overall military personnel burden by Spring.
Engine 10-Ladder 10 which is located at 124 Liberty St. in downtown New York City, the first firefighters to respond to the World Trade Center attack, reopened their firehouse across the street from the disaster site yesterday, two years after 9/11. According to AP news, the 136 year old firehouse received a $3.5 million facelift and renovation that added better air conditioning, better plumbing and a bigger kitchen.
USA Today reports that Gary Leon Ridgway admitted yesterday to the strangling of 48 women in the Green River murders dating back from 1982 until 1998. Ridgway pled guilty to more murders than any other serial killer in U.S. history.However as a result of the plea agreement, his life was spared from the death penalty. According to legal experts, this ruling could make it very difficult for prosecutors to win a death sentence in the state of Washington in future murder cases.
Have a profitable day.
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