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The Fokker Chronicles



World Markets:
Europe was rejoined by British markets today and promptly added nearly 1% to the London FTSE. London's Brent Crude oil also came back from holiday with a vengeance and priced in this past weekend's Middle East oil terrorism in Saudi Arabia and low US fuel stocks as it gushed to 13 year highs today and levels not seen since the first Gulf War in 1991.


The two key data points on the economic front today include Factory Orders for March at 10amEDT as well as a FOMC rate decision expected for 2:15am. No rate change is expected however Fed watchers will be closely eyeballing the language used in the Fed's text. Fed Fund futures are currently pricing in a 25 basis point increase by the August FOMC meeting and a 75 basis point hike by December.

After the bell, lookout for earnings results from Protein Design(PDLI:NASD) and Prudential(PRU:NYSE). Tomorrow morning will deliver earnings from Legg Mason(LM:NYSE), CVS Corp.(CVS:NYSE) and Orbitz(ORBZ:NASD).

Brokerage Chatter:
Smith Barney is encouraging its clients to buy ahead of Cisco(CSCO:NASD) quarterly report on May 11th. Siebel Systems(SEBL:NASD) was cut to hold from buy at Wedbush and had its price target cut to $12 from $18. Susquehanna reduced a handful of select semi equipment names taking Lam Research(LRCX:NASD), United Micro(UMC:NYSE) and Teradyn(TER:NYSE) to list a few from net positive to net neutral. Internet Security(ISSX:NASD) was upped to neutral at Susquehanna.

Jefferies upgraded Gap Stores(GPS:NYSE) to buy from hold. JP Morgan added Cadence Design(CDN:NYSE) to its focus list. UBS upgraded Eastman Chem(EMN:NYSE) to buy from neutral and raised its target to $50 from $45. Lehman upped Adobe(ADBE:NASD) and RBC Capital raised Anadarko Pet(APC:NYSE) to outperform from sector perform.

Financial Headlines:
Stories :

The New York Post reports that CNBC anchor Louis Rukeyser, who has been absent from his show "Louis Rukeyser's Wall Street," as well as the periodical that bears his name announced he has cancer.

According to tech journal Silicon Strategies , Motorola(MOT:NASD) Freescale Semi IPO may not happen.

Bloomberg newswires report that Hewlett Packard(HPQ:NYSE) and British Telecom(BT:NYSE) announced a $1.5 billion global IT communications deal.

Metlife(MET:NYSE) reported 1st quarter better than consensus at $0.78 versus $0.75.
Vishay(VSH:NYSE) beat by $0.06.
Northrop Grumman(NOC:NYSE) topped estimates by $0.04.
PG&E Corp(PCG:NYSE) beat by a penny.

Around the world in 80 ticks:

BBC news reports that following a letter sent by 52 former British diplomats to Prime Minister Tony Blair, President Bush received a similar letter of his own complaining about his approach on Mid-East policy. The former US envoys charged that Bush's handling of the Israeli/Palestinian matters is costing the US "credibility, prestige and friends". They further criticized the White House's unfettered support for Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in hopes of persuading Bush to act on what would make his friends happy and not necessarily oblige his own moral and just obligations. In related news, authorities have allegedly thwarted an assassination plot against President Bush at next month's NATO summit in Istanbul.

On the heels of those American soldiers that have been court-martialed and the focus of explicit photographs abusing Iraqi soldiers, BBC reports the UK government is expected to make a statement in regard to photos showing British troops also abusing an Iraqi.

The latest installment of exposing another flaw within the Windows operating system and creating mayhem for hundreds of thousands of computer users has quickly spread around the globe, including Taiwan, Hong Kong, and India. The Sasser worm which first turned up on Friday according to NBC news spreads by scanning unprotected computers which run Windows XP or Windows 2000 and ultimately downloads itself, scans the internet for other computers to attack and finally causes continual crashes and rebooting. Please check with your local administrator for the Microsoft patch available to protect against this latest computer virus.

Have a great day!


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