The Fokker Chronicles
European markets were mixed to lower. The London FTSE was breaking with the group and gaining 0.80% half way through its session. Asian stocks were stronger today as the Japanese Nikkei gained 0.94% and the Hang Seng finished higher by 0.84%.
Lookout for the University of Michigan report at 9:50amEDT, expectations are around 103. Earnings next week include Deere & Co.(DE:NYSE), Applied Materials(AMAT:NASD), Ciena(CIEN:NAD), and Hewlett Packard(HPQ:NYSE).
Jefferies downgraded Orbital Sciences(ORB:NYSE) to hold from buy. UBS initiated coverage of Alliant Tech(ATK:NYSE) with a buy rating and $68 target. Oppenheimer upgraded Cabot Micro(CCMP:NASD) to buy from neutral, however cut its target to $54 from $58. Intel's(INTC:NASD) revenue estimate was trimmed at Banc of America securities. Friedman Billings downgraded Bristol Myers Squibb(BMY:NYSE) to underperform from market perform. Morgan Stanley raised Lowes(LOW:NYSE) 4th quarter estimates 2 cents.
Goldman Sachs downgraded GlaxoSmithKline(GSK:NYSE) to in-line from outperform. Deutsche downgraded some of the oil services stocks to hold from buy, individually naming Cooper Cameron(CAM:NYSE) and Schlumberger(SLB:NYSE). Merrill Lynch upgraded Analog Devices(ADI:NYSE) to buy from neutral. Raymond James upgraded Dell Computer(DELL:NASD) to strong buy from outperform. Sanmina(SANM:NASD) was upped to equal-weight from underweight at Morgan Stanley.
AMG reported that for the week ending February 11th, equity funds showed net cash inflows equaling $4.1 billion. Net investor inflows have now hit its heaviest rate since March 2000, or a rate of $8.6 billion per week over a four week period.
The Washington Post reported that Walt Disney(DIS:NYSE) board of directors were likely to reject Comcast's(CMCSA:NASD) $56 billion takeover bid because it is deemed to low.
Reuters reported yesterday that parts of Microsoft(MSFT:NASD) classified source code for its Windows programs had leaked onto the Internet. The company admitted that the leak could have exposed its products to hackers and pirating. Specifically, portions of the source code to Windows 2000 and NT 4.0 were leaked over the Internet.
According to Bloomberg newswires, Cingular, a unit of SBC Comm(SBC:NYSE) and BellSouth(BLS:NYSE) was expected to outbid Vodafone(VOD:NYSE) for AT&T Wireless(AWE:NYSE) by upping its offer to $11 a share valuing the deal at $30 billion. The deadline for the bidding process is 5pmEDT this afternoon.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Cisco Systems Inc.(CSCO:NASD) and Intl Bus. Machines(IBM:NYSE) announced they would collaborate on security technology.
Imclone(IMCL:NASD) on positive news for its erbitux drug was halted yesterday and has resumed trading this morning; stock was trading up nearly 40% in the pre-market session.
NVIDIA(NVDA:NASD) guided lower for its April quarter revenues.
Dell Computer(DELL:NASD) beat by $0.01 on in line revenues.
Analog Devices(ADI:NYSE) beat by 2 pennies.
Around the world in 80 ticks:
The Associated Press reported last night that the federal commission responsible for investigating the 9/11 attacks is expected to ask President Bush, and former President Clinton along with their Vice Presidents to publicly testify about what terror warnings they may have received from US intel leading up to the attacks. In related news, an ABC News/Washington Post poll found Bush's approval rating has hit its lowest point during his presidency. 42% of those polled said they felt they couldn't trust the President.
Reuters reports that a U.S. ambassador to the European Union said yesterday that the anti-Semitism in Europe is almost as bad as it was during the 1930's.
AP news reports that a joint sting operation between the FBI and US Army intelligence caught a national guardsman from Washington state attempting to pass military secrets on to Al Qaeda via the Internet. According to defense officials, Specialist Ryan Anderson was arrested yesterday after he was found to have offered the terrorist group information on U.S. military capabilities and weaponry days before he was due to ship out to Iraq for active duty. Anderson is currently being held pending criminal charges of aiding the enemy by wrongfully attempting to communicate and give intelligence to the Al Qaeda terrorist network. Anderson, a converted Muslim, is the latest in a series of traitors that have sprung up in the Northwestern part of the U.S., the most recent, a former Intel software engineer from Oregon that received seven years in prison for offering aid to the Taliban in 2001.
Hate to break news like this on the eve of Valentine's Day but the Associated Press reported last night that the romance between Ken and Barbie is over. Following 43 years of being dubbed one of the world's prettiest couples, the perfect plastic pair has broken up. According to VP of marketing at Mattel(MAT:NYSE), Russell Arons, it was time that Barbie and Ken separate. The announcement by Mattel was actually prompted by the new release of its "California Girl Barbie," due out in stores. The ad showed Ken in the picture but Mattel claims he is now "just a friend." According to the children's toy maker, Barbie and Ken had met on the set of a TV commercial back in 1961.
According to Reuters that cited al-Riyadh, the Saudis will not be exchanging flowers and jewelry this weekend since they ordered Muslims to shun Valentine's Day, a day they referred to as a "pagan" holiday that would be met with god's wrath.
Happy Valentine's Day and have a terrific weekend!
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