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Spotlight Stocks: Citigroup, General Motors, HSBC, Humana

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Monday's top stories and stocks with potential to move.

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Stocks to watch for Monday, August 4, 2008:

  • Citigroup (C) is planning to close its $400 million convertible arbitrage fund, Tribeca Convertible LP. People familiar with the matter said the fund's managers, Andrew Wang and Jeffry Chmielewski, will be leaving the company. This is a big step for Citi in meeting its goal of closing the $2.4 billion Tribeca Global Investment hedge fund.

  • General Motors (GM) reported declining sales in the US for the month of July, with a 26.1% drop in light vehicles and a 34.7% drop in light-trucks. GM was not alone as other major players in the industry were feeling the pain too. Toyota (TM) reported an 11.9% drop in US sales for the month of July. Ford (F) said it sold 161,530 vehicles last month, down 14.9% from 189,920 a year ago.

  • HSBC (HBC) reported a first half pretax profit of $10.2 billion, losing 28% from the $14.2 billion it reported in the same period a year ago. The average forecast was for $10.1 billion. The company cited bad debts on US home loans and asset writedowns for the loss, despite growth in Asia. The bank's impairment charge was $10.1 billion for the six months, up 58 percent from a year ago, mainly due to losses from its book of U.S. mortgages, which totaled $6.8 billion, reported Reuters.

  • Humana (HUM) reported 2Q earnings of $209.9 million, or $1.24 a share, down 3% from $216.8 million, or $1.28 a share a year ago. The company had projected earnings of $1.15 to $1.20 a share while analysts had expected $1.18 a share. 2Q revenue rose 14 percent to $7.3 billion from $6.4 billion. A large decline in its premiums from the Medicare prescription drug plans hurt the company, offsetting growth in its Medicare Advantage and commercial segments. HUM raised its full year projections to a range of $4.30 to $4.40 per share, up from $4.10 to $4.35.


Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -1.52%, Nikkei -1.23%, Sensex -0.54%, Taiwan -0.36% and Shanghai -2.14%.

  • A quick check towards Europe finds the CAC -0.10%, DAX -0.89%, FTSE -0.12%, ATX +1.47%, Swiss Market -0.52% and Stockholm -0.12%.

  • Commodities are lower with crude oil down -0.01 to 125.09 and gold -2.2 to 906.7 this morning.
No positions in stocks mentioned.

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