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The Fokker Chronicles



World Markets:

Global markets were trading weaker today as a result of rising energy prices and continued terrorism. The DAX, CAC40 and Spanish IBEX all shed over 1% today ahead of the open on Wall Street. Yesterday stocks added some modest gains without the help of U.S, equity trading. In Asia stocks were mixed as the Japanese Nikkei gained 0.54% and the Hang Seng lost 0.76% on its respective sessions today. Spot gold gained $3 and the dollar index was hanging in negative territory ahead of U.S. equity trading this morning.


The earnings calendar will be very light this week however, mid quarter updates could offer guidance for some companies. Today Foundry(FDRY:NASD), Altera(ALTR:NASD), and Triquint(TQNT:NASD) will have meetings while the big meeting of the week will come Thursday with the mid quarter update from Intel(INTC:NASD).

The economic calendar today shapes up with Construction Spending for April, ISM Manufacturing and Prices Paid data for May due out at 10amEDT.

Brokerage Chatter:
Merrill Lynch reduced its estimates on Intel(INTC:NASD) ahead of its mid quarter update to in-line with the Street with revenue estimates below consensus. Jefferies upgraded Providian(PVN:NYSE) to buy from hold and raised its target to $16 from $12. Prudential dropped Oracle(ORCL:NASD) to neutral-weight from overweight and cut its target to $13 from $15. CSFB downgraded Guidant(GDT:NYSE) to neutral from outperform. Bear Stearns upgraded USF Corp(USFC:NYSE) to outperform from peer perform.

Siebel Systems(SEBL:NASD) was upped to buy from neutral at Fulcrum. Merrill Lynch added Caremark Rx(CMX:NYSE) to its Focus 1 List. Merrill Lynch cut the Chicago Mercantile(CME:NYSE) to neutral from buy. Merrill however upgraded Foundry(FDRY:NASD) to buy from neutral. Banc of America upped its price target on Nextel(NXTL:NASD) to $25 from $22. Lehman Brothers raised its estimates on National Semi(NSM:NYSE) and EMC Corp(EMC:NYSE) received positive mention from CSFB while JDS Uniphase(JDSU:NASD) had positive praise from Banc of America after meetings with management.

Financial Headlines:
Stories :

MSNBC reports that Viacom's(VIA.B:NYSE) Mel Karmazin announced his resignation as Freston and Moonves will move into the hot seats to serve as co-presidents of the media company. Company officials added that Karmazin will serve as a consultant over the next 2 months.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Chinese officials are stepping up preparations for listing its banks for public ownership.

According to Newsweek, Martha Stewart is angling to shorten her jail sentence by offering to subject herself to volunteer work. Will motorists find Martha picking up trash now on the Long Island Expressway in an orange jumper? Not likely according to the weekly magazine. The home decorative diva has apparently offered her skills to the Women's Venture Fund, which helps teach low-income women to become entrepreneurs.

Around the world in 80 ticks:
Despite Saudi claims that its energy infrastructure had been unharmed from the suspected Al-Qaeda attack which claimed 22 people over the weekend, NYMEX crude had traded to $41 a barrel in Europe while Brent crude oil had been trading over 5% higher today. Saudi leaders attempted more "damage control" today following the two day rampage of shooting and hostage taking by Al-Qaeda while the BBC news said the leader of the Saudi attacks had been Al-Qaeda trained.

Over the weekend, the New York Post slipped an article into its Sunday edition highlighting a disease, which health officials referred to as the "superbug." The tenacious skin disease had previously resided solely in hospitals but has somehow leapt from New York City hospital beds and has begun to hit home. Officials said this bug had been confined to hospitals for years preying on patients who fought the disease through antibiotics. However, this disease has now begun to alarm officials who cite a new case popping up in NYC clinics once a week and has become resilient to antibiotics. According to one physician, infections typically take hold only through a break in the skin with this disease; however it can be acquired through unbroken skin by casual contact. Officials said there are currently three antibiotics left which can fight the disease but added that those are starting to lose their effectiveness.

The LA Lakers moved on to the NBA Finals last night after eliminating the Minnesota Timberwolves 96-90. This represents the Lakers 4th trip in 5 years to the NBA Championship series and will await the winner of tonight's Detroit Pistons/Indiana Pacers matchup. Detroit holds a 3 games to 2 advantage and can advance with a win at home tonight.

Dreamworks' Shrek2 held onto the top spot at the box office over the important Memorial Day weekend and based on gross figures topped the 1997 weekend release of "The Lost World: Jurassic Park." Storming into a close second place finish was the disaster flick from Fox Ent.(FOX:NYSE), "The Day after Tomorrow." Both movies to no surprise accounted for 76% of all revenues this weekend out of the12 movies in circulation; according to Reuters.

Have a great day.


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