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Spotlight Stocks: Countrywide, Rio Tinto, UBS, U.S. Steel, Yahoo


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


Stocks to watch for Wednesday, January 30, 2008:

  • Countrywide (CFC) reported a 4Q loss of $421.9 mln, or 79 cents a share, compared to $621.6 million, or $1.01 a share a year ago, amid falling home priced and growing defaults. The figure is up from the 3Q as the company saw a smaller loss from core mortgage-lending operation.
  • Rio Tinto (RTP) shares were trading higher yesterday after talk circulated that it had opened its books to BHP Billiton (BHP) after it received an improved offer to sell.
  • UBS (UBS) reported a $4 bln write-down related to subprime mortgage problems. The bank has written down a total of $18.4 bln. The company reported a 4Q loss of $11.45 bln.
  • U.S. Steel (X) reported 4Q net income fell to $35 mln, or 29 cents a share from $297 mln, or $2.50 a share a year ago, marking an 88% dip. According to Forbes, the results included charges of $69 million related to inventory adjustments after two major acquisitions and $57 million for a voluntary early retirement program at its Slovakian unit, U.S. Steel Kosice. Income fell despite rising sales, which were up 20% to $4.5 bln.
  • Yahoo (YHOO) reported 4Q net income of $205.7 mln, or 15 cents a share, down from $268.7 mln, or 19 cents a share a year ago. Revenue was up 8% to $1.8 bln. Net sales were up to $1.4 bln from $1.2 bln.
  • Clear Channel Communications (CCU) value has fallen $2.3 bln in the past two days, with its shares down 7.2% yesterday amid rumors the $19 bln buyout plan was in jeopardy.
  • Eli Lily (LLY) reported 4Q net income of $854.4 mln, or 78 cents a share, up from $132.3 mln, or 12 cents a share a year ago. The company incurred a share this quarter of 12 cents a share for restructuring and license deals, which was down from the 73 cents a share charge incurred last year.

Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -2.63%, Nikkei -0.99%, Sensex -1.84%, Taiwan -0.43% and Shanghai -0.90%.
  • A quick check across the pond finds the CAC -1.73%, DAX -0.67%, FTSE -0.76%, ATX -0.15%, Swiss Mkt. -0.11% and Stockholm -0.49%.
  • In commodities, crude oil is trading higher +0.72 to 92.36 while gold is lower -1.0 to 924.0 this morning.


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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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