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Stocks to Watch: Apple, Bristol-Meyers, Ford, Gap, Marvell


Eye on the prize...


Stocks to watch for Wednesday, September 13

  • American Express (AMEX) is expected to announce that it will allow some customers to use its cards to make condominium down payments.
  • Apple (AAPL) unveiled a new device that will display downloaded movies on TV sets and announced a licensing deal with Disney (DIS). It also revamped its line of iPods.
  • Ashworth (ASHW) said Chief Executive Randall Herrel Sr. has resigned, effective Oct. 17. The Carlsbad, Calif.-based retailer said James Hayes, its lead independent director, has been elected chairman of the board.
  • BP (BP) America President Bob Malone told U.S. lawmakers that the company is on the brink of a deal with the Department of Interior that would resolve the agency's concerns about flawed Gulf of Mexico drilling leases.
  • Bristol-Myers (BMY) named director James Cornelius as interim CEO after firing its chief executive, sparking takeover speculation.
  • Business Objects (BOBJ) agreed to acquire privately held Armstrong Laing Ltd. for 30 million pounds ($56 million). The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter.
  • Countrywide Financial (CFC) Chief Executive Officer Angelo Mozilo intends to extend his employment with the largest U.S. home-mortgage lender.
  • Discovery Partners International (DPII) said its shareholders have approved the company's merger with Infinity Pharmaceuticals Inc.
  • Energy Conversion Devices (ENER) said the fourth-quarter net loss narrowed to $769,000 or 2 cents a share, from a net loss of $6.9 million, or 23 cents a share, during the same period in the prior year.
  • The world's top handset maker Nokia (NOK) and the largest video games publisher Electronic Arts (ERTS) said on Tuesday EA will start to offer mobile games to current and next generation Nokia phones. ERTS also entered into an agreement with Apple (AAPL) to supply gaming features to the new product line of iPods.
  • Ford Motor (F) is aiming to slash its white-collar costs by nearly a third as part of a stepped up restructuring plan, the Wall Street Journal reported.
  • Lehman Brothers upgraded apparel group The Gap (GPS) to overweight from equal-weight, saying denim is being revamped for the fourth quarter and the Old Navy chain has begun to improve year-over-year, led by knits, wovens and accessories, with some initial success in sweaters.
  • Globecomm Systems (GCOM) reported fourth-quarter net earnings of $1.5 million, or 10 cents a share, up 41% from $1.07 million, or 7 cents a share, during the year-ago period. The provider of satellite-based communication solutions posted revenue of $35.5 million vs. $26.7 million.
  • California's attorney general said he has enough evidence in the Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) case to issue indictments. HPQ named CEO Hurd to replace Chairman Dunn. A small Boston private-investigation firm has been tied to the probe.
  • International Coal Group (ICO) cut its 2006 outlook a result of the idling its Sycamore 2 mine and continued cost pressures at operations in the central and northern Appalachian regions.
  • Joy Global (JOYG) said it has increased its current $300 million buyback program to a level of $1 billion and extended it until the end of 2008 from May 2007.
  • Krispy Kreme (KKD) Doughnuts said it hired former tobacco-company executive Charles A. Blixt as its interim general counsel.
  • Lockheed Martin (LMT) said its company-led team has been awarded a multiyear contract from the Air Force worth $589 million.
  • Marvell Technology Group (MRVL) said it has received notice from Nasdaq that it isn't in compliance with the exchange's rules due to the delayed filing of its Form 10-Q for the quarter ended July 29.
  • McDonald's (MCD) August same-store sales rose 6%, buoyed by strength in Europe and the introduction of its new "snack wrap."
  • Microsoft (MSFT) said Doug Burgum, the head of its Business Solutions division and former CEO of Great Plains Software, is leaving the company.
  • New York Times (NYT) said it plans to sell its nine television stations, less than three months after the company said it had no plans to sell the unit.
  • OSI Restaurant Partners (OSI) named Jody Bilney chief marketing officer of Outback Steakhouse. Most recently, Bilney served as chief marketing officer at Openwave Systems Inc.
  • Osiris Therapeutics (OSIR) reported a second-quarter net loss of $11.6 million, or $1.27 a share, compared with a net loss of $3.4 million, or 38 cents a share, in the year-ago period.
  • Filtration-equipment maker Pall (PLL) said it earned $62.8 million, or 50 cents a share, in its fiscal fourth quarter, up 45% from a year ago on double-digit increases in demand from its aerospace, electronics and life sciences customers.
  • RailAmerica (RRA) said total carloads in August fell 2.1%, to 107,025 from 109,287 in the same month last year. On a comparable railroad basis, excluding the sale of certain properties, August carloads fell 0.5% to 104,056 from 104,595 in last year.
  • RealNetworks (RNWK) said it has agreed to buy South Korea-based mobile music and entertainment provider WiderThan Co. for $17.05 a share, or roughly $350 million.
  • Scotts Miracle-Gro (SMG) said Robert Bernstock, president and chief operating officer, has left the organization and it has eliminated the role of COO. The lawn and garden products company said it has named Chris Nagel, currently chief financial officer, as executive vice president of the North American consumer business, the company's largest operating unit.
  • Sears Holdings (SHLD) said its board has approved buying back up to an additional $500 million of the company's shares.
  • Time Warner's (TWX) Time Inc. magazine division said it's putting 18 of its smaller titles, including Parenting and Popular Science, up for sale in a move to focus on its biggest brands in print.

Market Update

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +0.79%, Nikkei +0.20%, Sensex +2.00%, Shanghai -0.38 and Jakarta +1.11.
  • A check of the European bourses finds the CAC -0.03%, DAX +0.25%, FTSE -0.04% and Swiss Market +0.25%.
  • Crude oil is trading +0.31 to 64.07 while gold is -2.50 to 591.8 for their part stateside futes are below fair value.
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