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The Fokker Chronicles

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World Markets:

Global markets were getting a lift this morning after a strong finish in the Asian sector. The CAC40, DAX and Spanish IBEX were showing gains ahead of the U.S. equity open adding 1.60%, 1.70% and 2.15% respectively. The gains in the Japanese Nikkei, which added 2.4% on its session, was pressuring the dollar yen by 1.45 and boosting spot gold by $5 per ounce. The Hang Seng posted a hefty 3.59% today gain while the MSCI Asian-Pacific index (a Morgan Stanley Capital Intl Index tracking 850 stocks in the Asian region) had its biggest pop in two years.


Heads-up:

After the bell lookout for earnings from Brocade(BRCD:NASD), Hot Topic(HOTT:NADS), Intuit(INTU:NASD) and Synopsys(SNPS:NASD).

Economic releases will be quiet today, however tomorrow morning we'll review data on the jobless claims, Leading Indicators, and the Phila Fed.

Brokerage Chatter:

Legg Mason initiated Research in Motion(RIMM:NASD) with a buy rating and a $124 target. CSFB upgraded Hovnanian Ent.(HOV:NYSE) to neutral from underperform. Wells Fargo upgraded TXU(TXU:NYSE) to buy from hold. Soundview upped Fox Ent.(FOX:NYSE) to outperform from neutral and raised its target to $33 from $30. Soundview also upped Unisys(UIS:NYSE) to outperform from neutral. Merrill Lynch downgraded Foot Locker(FL:NYSE) to neutral from buy. Piper Jaffray upgraded JC Penney(JCP:NYSE) to outperform from market perform.

UBS downgraded select semi equipment stocks from buy to neutral including Applied Materials(AMAT:NASD), Novellus(NVLS:NASD) and Varian Semi(VSEA:NASD) to name a few. CIBC upgraded Hewlett Packard(HPQ:NYSE) to outperform from sector perform. Goldman Sachs upgraded Petro China(PTR:NYSE) to outperform from in-line. Network Appliance(NTAP:NASD) was upped at ThinkEquity to an overweight from equal weight.

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Financial Headlines:
Stories :
The MBA mortgage applications fell last week nearly 12% to the lowest level since the beginning of the year.

According to the LA Times, the Las Vegas Sands, owner of Venetian Casino Resort is planning on raising $200 million in an IPO.


Earnings:

Hewlett Packard(HPQ:NYSE) reported EPS 2 pennies better on revenues of $20.1 billion versus $19.32 billion.
Autodesk(ADSK:NASD) beat by $0.11 and guided its 2nd quarter revenues higher.
Applied Materials(AMAT:NASD) beat by $0.03, and topped revenue estimates.


Around the world in 80 ticks:
AP newswires report that China has contacted Taiwan's president to clarify its position and renounce any possible thoughts of independence. China continued its hard pressed words and warned that it isn't afraid to attack Taiwan, regardless if it means sacrificing relations with America and international trade relations. China said it wouldn't hesitate to use force if the Taiwanese president so much as uses the word independence. Fortunately for them, English isn't the native tongue spoken in Taiwan.

The Associated Press reports that former New York City Mayor Giuliani is testifying this morning before the 9/11 commission in order to defend the efforts of his former aides and colleagues. Several of Giuliani's deputies were publicly confronted citing long-running problems with the city's emergency response prior to the attacks.

ESPN reports that the 40 year old, 6-foot-10 lanky left hander Randy Johnson of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitched a perfect game last night against the Atlanta Braves. In a 13 strikeout effort and the second career no-hitter, Johnson became only the 17th pitcher in baseball history dating back to the 1800's, to pitch a perfect game.

Have a great day.

Fokker



position in txu, hpq
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