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Stocks to Watch: Countrywide, Deutsche Bank, Micron Technologies, Toyota, Verizon


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


Stocks to watch for Wednesday, October 3, 2007:

  • Bob Evans Farms' (BOBE) September same-store sales rose 0.4%, aided by the company's new stir-fry promotion. Same-store sales at Mimi's Cafe fell 2%.
  • Countrywide Financial (CFC), amid negative news including its recent finances and the slashing of its work force by up to 20%, is launching a new PR campaign to help its image among its own employees. The campaign will include in house wristbands bearing the slogan "Protect Our House" and pep talks.
  • Credit Suisse (CS) said it was cutting 170 investment banking jobs. 100 of these jobs are in the commercial mortgage-backed securities unit with the remaining 70 scattered across the investment bank. "In line with the current market environment we've made targeted reductions to adjust for capacity to meet diminished client demand," said a spokeswoman reading from a statement.
  • Deutsche Bank (DB) said it will take up to $3,09 bln in charges for the third quarter related to leverage loans, structured credit products and mortgage-backed securities.
  • Hershey (HSY) said David West will become the new chief executive on Dec. 1, succeeding Richard Lenny. West has served as Hershey's chief operating officer since 2005. He will assume the duties of president and join the board immediately. Lenny will continue as chairman until the end of the year. Board member Robert Campbell will become the company's non-executive chairman on Jan. 1, 2008.
  • Micron Technology (MU) reported a quarterly net loss of $158 million, or 21 cents a share, as it continued to be hurt by prices declines for its memory chips used in PCs and consumer electronics.
  • Toyota (TM) is pushing its environmentally friendly campaign into places like Des Moines, Iowa; Livingston, Montana and Chatanooga, Tennessee. TM will take a 53-foot trailer filled with information and exhibits on energy consumption and fossil fuels to 150 stops in these areas where pickups and SUV's have been the auto of choice.
  • Verizon (VZ) will introduce four new phone devices, to be released in several weeks, two of which will include touch screen technology similar to Apple's (AAPL) iPhone. An example is the LG Electronics Voyager, which has a large touch screen similar to the iPhone but folds out laterally like the LG EnV to reveal a second screen and keyboard.
  • Westwood One's (WON) directors have approved a programming and distribution arrangement with CBS Radio, of CBS Corp. (CBS) . The arrangement, which had been scheduled to expire on March 31, 2009, will run through March 2017. Westwood One has recommended that shareholders approve the plans at its annual meeting, to be held early in the first quarter of 2008.

Market Update

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -2.55%, Nikkei +0.90%, Sensex +2.99% and Taiwan +0.80%. China markets were closed.
  • Glancing towards Europe, we find the CAC -0.02%, DAX +0.14%, FTSE +0.50%, ATX +0.54%, Swiss Mkt. -0.01% and Stockholm +0.44%.
  • Crude oil is trading higher +0.47 to 80.50 and gold is higher +0.6 to 736.9 this morning.
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