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Stocks To Watch: Ford, Google, Halliburton, New York Times, Texas Instruments


Today's big stories and some stocks with potential to move...


Stocks to watch for Monday, March 12:

  • Bridgford Foods (BRID) said it swung to a fiscal first-quarter net profit of $40,000, or less than a penny a share, from a year-earlier loss of $137,000, or 1 cent a share. The Anaheim, Calif., convenience food company's sales declined more than 6% to $32.3 million for the quarter ended Jan. 26, from $34.6 million in the year-earlier period.
  • Delaware's Supreme Court on Friday refused to hear an appeal by Express Scripts (ESRX) of a lower court decision that cleared the way to a March 16 vote by Caremark Rx (CMX) shareholders on a merger with CVS (CVS).
  • Ford Motor (F) could announce as early as Monday a deal to sell its Aston Martin brand to a private consortium for as much as $870 million, according to published reports in the U.S. and the U.K.
  • Fremont General (FMT) has hired Credit Suisse to help the company sell its subprime-mortgage business, according to a regulatory filing.
  • Google (GOOG) has begun a test run to steer targeted commercials to cable subscribers, a move that could change the way TV ads are sold and delivered.
  • Halliburton (HAL) will move its corporate headquarters from Houston to Dubai, the company announced Sunday.
  • New Century's (NEW) swift rise and fall illuminates how Wall Street banks and hedge funds helped fuel a binge in subprime lending that prolonged the housing boom.
  • New York Times (NYT) invited a Morgan Stanley money manager to make a presentation to its board last month, in a sign the publisher may be trying to appease critical investors.
  • Palm (PALM) has hired Paul Mercer, a software-design engineer who helped to lay the foundation for the iPod operating system.
  • Texas Instruments (TXN) plan to boost chip production in the current quarter has positioned the company well to take advantage of rising demand, several analysts said Friday, helping send TI shares up ahead of its mid-quarter update.
  • Trump Entertainment Resorts (TRMP) is exploring strategic alternatives ranging from sale of a property to sale of the company, people familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal Online. Trump Entertainment operates three casinos in Atlantic City, and the Trump Marina may be a sale target, the Journal reported.
  • Wal-Mart (WMT) intends to move its top government-relations official in Washington to a job at its Bentonville, Ark., headquarters, meaning the giant retailer is searching for a new point person for its efforts inside the Beltway.
  • Xinhua Financial Media's (XFML) shares fell more than 10% below its offering price on Friday as a recent global sell-off in China took its toll on the financial news provider's U.S. stock market debut.
  • Shares of Yahoo (YHOO) dropped Friday on a media report that it's negotiating potentially sweeping changes that could scale back its partnership with AT&T (T), which expires in April 2008, and could cost Yahoo millions in revenue.

Market Update

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +1.61%, Nikkei +0.75%, Sensex +0.14%, Taiwan +0.81% and Shanghai +0.58%.
  • Looking over at Europe, we find the CAC -0.07%, DAX +0.17%, FTSE +0.16%, ATX -0.15%, Swiss Mkt. +0.09% and Stockholm +0.65%.
  • Gold is trading +1.10 to 653.1 and crude oil is -0.71 to 59.34 this morning.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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