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Spotlight Stocks: Dell, Google, Lehman, Microsoft


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


Stocks to watch for Friday, August 29, 2008:

  • Dell (DELL) reported fiscal 2Q earnings of $616 million, or 31 cents a share, down 17% from $746 million, or 32 cents a share a year ago. The company cited PC price cuts for the numbers which missed analyst expectations. Adjusted for amortization and business realignment charges, Dell said it would have earned 33 cents per share. Sales rose 11 percent to $16.4 billion, beating Street estimates of $15.9 billion.

  • General Motors (GM) vice chairman, Robert A. Lutz, said automakers were deserved of up to $50 billion in government-backed loans in order to build more fuel efficient cars. He said that the companies must retool their plants, but cannot raise enough capital to do so. The companies are urging Congress to appropriate $3.75 billion to back the $25 billion in loans authorized last year and are also asking for more to be approved by the end of September.

  • Google (GOOG) will reportedly go ahead with its search-advertising partnership with Yahoo (YHOO) by early October, despite facing a U.S. Justice Department probe. Under the agreement, Yahoo will allow Google to put search ads on its site. Google currently holds 60% of the Internet search market while Yahoo controls 16.6%.

  • Lehman Brothers (LEH) is planning to lay off between 1,000 and 1,500 employees, or about 6% of the company's workforce, reported The Wall Street Journal. "The downturn is longer than expected. This is an assessment of the extent to which you need these people," said Roger Lister, the chief credit officer of the U.S. financial institutions group at credit-rating agency DBRS Inc.

  • Microsoft (MSFT) has agreed to purchase Greenfield Online (SRVY), the owner of a group of Web comparison shopping sites called Ciao. The company says the Ciao sites get more than 26 million unique visitors a month and has produced more than 5 million product reviews, reported the Associated Press. This is a cash deal worth about $486 million. Greenfield shareholders will get $17.50 a share.

Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +1.38%, Nikkei +2.39%, Sensex +3.67%, Taiwan +0.18% and Shanghai +2.01%.

  • A quick check across the pond finds the CAC +0.31%, DAX -0.01%, FTSE +0.34%, ATX -0.28%, Swiss Market +0.68% and Stockholm -0.34%.

  • In commodities, crude oil is trading higher +1.61 to 117.22 and gold is also up +4.7 to 838.0 this morning.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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