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Stocks To Watch: General Motors, GlaxoSmithKline, Sun Microsystems, Verizon, Wendy's


Today's top stories and some stocks with potential to move...


Stocks to watch for Tuesday, July 31:

  • Since Apple (AAPL) has booked considerable amounts of NAND flash from suppliers, those memory module houses that are unable to source sufficient stock are now looking to Micron Technology (MU) as an alternative supplier.
  • AT&T (T) will announce deal with EMusic to sell songs over mobile phones, will work on handsets by Samsung (005930 KS) and Nokia (NOK), will cost $7.99 for 5 songs because of expense of sending over a mobile network
  • Cache's (CACH) July comparable-store sales increased 6%. The specialty women's retailer said total sales for the four weeks ended July 28 increased 3% to $16.5 million. The company also said its board approved a stock repurchase program in which it can buy back up to 1 mln shares, or 6% of its outstanding common stock.
  • Dow Jones (DJ) and News Corp. (NWS) will be in focus, with The Wall Street Journal reporting that a final agreement edged closer as Dow Jones negotiated on an usual deal to cover the advisory fees for the controlling shareholders, the Bancroft family, in exchange for some of the family members supporting the deal.
  • General Motors (GM) reported a second-quarter profit of $891 mln on Tuesday, a huge reversal from the $3.4 bln loss it posted in the same period last year.
  • GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK) diabetes drug Avandia should stay on the market with a strong warning about increased risks of heart disease, an expert panel recommended to the Food and Drug Administration.
  • Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) said it planned to eliminate 3% to 4% of its global work force as part of a plan to improve its cost structure. The cost-cutting plan is expected to generate pretax, annual cost savings of $1.3 bln to $1.6 bln for 2008, the diversified health care company said.
  • Limited Brands' (LTD) Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer Len Schlesinger has decided to resign. The apparel retailer said Schlesinger's responsibilities will be assumed by Chief Executive Leslie H. Wexner and Martyn Redgrave, executive vice president and chief administrative officer.
  • Postage-meter maker Pitney Bowes (PBI) said it swung to a second-quarter profit, driven by strength in its U.S. mailing segment.
  • Sun Microsystems (SUNW) swung to a fiscal fourth-quarter profit from a year-ago loss as the enterprise computer server and software developer made large cuts in its operating expenses.
  • Verizon Wireless (VZ) said it would pay $757 mln to buy Rural Cellular (RCCC) to help cut roaming expenses and other operating costs.
  • Billionaire investor Nelson Peltz said his company, Triarc (TRY), which owns fast-food chain Arby's, would be a "natural, strategic buyer" for Wendy's (WEN). Peltz has said he might pay as much as $3.6 bln for WEN, or $37-41 per share, and gave the company a deadline of Aug. 1st to sign a confidentiality agreement.

Market Update:

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +1.96%, Nikkei -0.23%, Sensex +1.90%, Taiwan +2.37% and Shanghai +0.68%.
  • Looking over at European bourses finds the CAC +1.80%, DAX +1.85%, FTSE +2.23%, ATX +2.56%, Swiss Mkt. +1.86% and Stockholm +1.31%.
  • Crude oil is trading higher +0.55 to 77.38 and gold is also up +3.2 to 667.3 this morning.
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No position in stocks mentioned.

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