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Spotlight Stocks: Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, Time Warner, Yahoo

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

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Stocks to watch for Wednesday, May 21, 2008:

  • Analog Devices (ADI) reported fiscal 2Q profit rose to $133.1 million, or 45 cents a share, reported MarketWatch. Revenue rose to $649.3 million from $597.5 million last year. Analysts estimated a quarterly profit of 41 cents a share on revenue of $627.3 million. The company forecast third-quarter earnings per share from continuing operations of 43 cents to 45 cents a share on revenue of $650 million to $665 million.
  • Barnes and Noble (BKS) is reportedly discussing the possibility of making a bid for rival book-seller Borders Group (BGP). The company has put together a team to look into the matter, as Borders had previously stated it would consider selling itself among liquidity and economic issues.
  • Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) reported fiscal 2Q net profit of $2.1 billion, or 80 cents a share, up from $1.8 billion, or 65 cents a share a year ago. Revenue climbed 11% from a year ago to $28.3 billion. The company said 70% of total revenue came from international markets. Particularly, growth in Brazil, Russia, India and China grew 26%.
  • Microsoft (MSFT) will launch a service, dubbed "Live Search cashback", that will pay customers who buy items they find through the software company's search service, reported The Wall Street Journal citing people familiar with the company's plan. The company continues to try to gain ground on Google (GOOG) in the Internet-search business.
  • Time Warner (TWX) is planning a spinoff of its Time Warner Cable (TWC) unit. The split is scheduled for the 4Q. TWX will receive a $9.25 billion windfall from a special $10.27-a-share dividend to be paid by the cable company, reported The Wall Street Journal. The deal allows Time Warner to slash its $34.6 billion debt load, which includes cable debt, by two-thirds.
  • Yahoo (YHOO) saw billionaire oil man T. Boone Pickens buy about 10 million shares, or about 0.75% stake in the company, as a show of support for investor Carl Icahn's proxy battle to unseat the company's board. "I'll jump in with Carl. He goes in first, I jump in behind him," Mr. Pickens said during the interview.


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Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +1.16%, Nikkei -1.65%, Sensex +0.08%, Taiwan -0.59% and Shanghai +2.93%.
  • Quickly checking European bourses, we see the CAC -0.39%, DAX -0.51%, FTSE +0.27%, ATX -0.15%, Swiss Mkt. -0.34% and Stockholm -0.14%.
  • In commodities, crude oil is trading higher +1.20 to 130.19 and gold is also up +3.4 to 923.6 this morning.
No positions in stocks mentioned.

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