The Fokker Chronicles
European markets were higher ahead of the US equity open. The German DAX was higher by nearly 1%. Siemens AG and SAP AG led the index higher midway through its session. The Japanese Nikkei posted another strong gain of 1.41%. US equities were poised to open higher ahead of the Michigan Confidence number.
Lookout for the University of Michigan Confidence at 9:55amEDT. Consensus is looking for 91.40. The Semiconductor Capital Equipment Book-to-Bill Ratio for August will be released later in the day. Hewlett Packard(HPQ:NYSE) will release its earnings after the bell today along with Agile Software(AGIL:NASD), Intuit(INTU:NASD), and Network Appliance(NTAP:NASD).
Deutsche Telecom(DT:NYSE) numbers were raised at Goldman Sachs. Marvell(MRVL:NASD) was upped to sector outperform at CIBC. Merrill Lynch upgraded the hardware sector to equal weight and downgraded its rating on the software group to underweight. Nokia(NOK:NYSE) had its estimates and price target raised at Deutsche Bank. Soundview upped Mercury Interactive(MERQ:NASD) to outperform from neutral. Micron Tech(MU:NYSE) received some positive chatter out of Deutsche Bank following an upbeat meeting with the company's management.
UBS upgraded Bank America (BAC:NYSE) to buy from neutral. Nabors Ind(NBR:NYSE) and Safeway(SWY:NYSE) were added to Merrill's Focus 1 list.
Broadcom(BRCM:NASD) was upped at several shops around the street today. Solomon raised its estimates for the company for 2003 and raised its price target to $28. CIBC upped Broadcom to sector outperform from sector perform and Thomas Weisel raised its rating on the company as well.
Lowe's(LOW:NYSE) received positive mention from several brokers today. Solomon Brothers raised its estimate on the company for 2003 from 2.20 to 2.26 and 2004 from 2.52 to 2.60, Solomon raised its target from $54 to $60; Bear Stearns raised its 3rd quarter 2003 estimate on LOW and Prudential upped the company to buy from hold.
Morgan Stanley's Galbraith raised his bond weighting to 25% from 20%
The booming housing market continues its torrid pace as Housing Starts came in at 1,872k better than the Bloomberg consensus of 1,791k.
Moody's Investors Service revised the outlook of Charter Communications(CHTR:NASD) to negative from stable following cancellation of a planned bond offering.
Staples(SPLS:NASD) beat by 2 cents and raised their full year outlook.
Home Depot(HD:NYSE) beat by 2 cents as well and reported better revenues and reaffirmed its full year outlook
Broadcom(BRCM:NASD) raised its guidance after close yesterday on the company's mid quarter update.
Agilent(A:NYSE) beat the street by 5 cents and guided in line
Flextronics(FLEX:NASD) made positive comments on its mid-quarter update citing strong July and a seasonally weaker August that is doing well.
Around the world in 80 ticks:
Reuters is reporting that a large explosion has torn through the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad. Reports are that there are several people injured and many more casualties according witnesses and the US Army.
According MSNBC, investigators have identified 100 suspects in the three serial killings in West Virginia that have authorities including the FBI scrambling.
Bloomberg newswire reports that an explosive device was found at the home of Charles Schwab. This happens to follow a recent string of layoffs at the company bearing his name.
BBC reports that Saddam's VP, Taha Yassin Ramadan Al-Jizwari, was captured in the city of Mosul yesterday. That would be the 10 of diamonds for those playing along.
The Washington Post reported that America Online(AOL:NYSE) has received approval from the FCC for its IM service to transmit video. ~ I can only imagine the improved customer service my brokers will provide.
Have a profitable day.
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