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Spotlight Stocks: Continental, Microsoft, PetroChina, Wrigley


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


Stocks to watch for Monday, April 28, 2008:

  • Continental Airlines (CAL) has opted to stay independent, ending talks with UAL Corp. (UAUA) over a possible merger with United Airlines, reported The Wall Street Journal. CEO Larry Kellner said Continental has "significant cultural, operational and financial strengths" that "would be placed at risk in a merger with another carrier in today's environment."
  • Ford Motor (F) may see Kirk Kerkorian's Tracinda make an offer to buy 20 million shares at $8.50 a share, a 13.3% premium over Ford's closing price on Friday. According to the Associated Press, Tracinda Corp. now owns 100 million Ford shares, or 4.7 percent of the outstanding stock. When the offer is completed, Tracinda's stake will increase to 5.6 percent.
  • Microsoft's (MSFT) $42.7 billion acquisition offer was turned down by Yahoo (YHOO) on the deal's Saturday deadline. MSFT is now considering a hostile takeover bid, which would be the largest of its kind in the tech-industry's history, reported WSJ. The paper also reported that CEO Steve Ballmer faces some opposition to the takeover bid within his own company, as this would mis-allocate key company resources.
  • PetroChina (PTR), the world's most valuable oil and gas producer, reported 1Q net profit of 28.89 billion yuan ($4.1 billion), 31.5% down from 42.14 billion a year ago. Reuters reports the company is being hit by high crude oil prices and government-set product prices.
  • William Wrigley Jr. Co. (WWY) may be acquired by Mars Inc. and Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A) for more than $22 billion. The combination would help to expand Mars' global reach. It currently has a 15% market share, or the majority of global sales in the candy business.

Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +0.59%, Nikkei +0.22%, Sensex -0.64%, Taiwan +1.47% and Shanghai -2.33%.
  • A glance towards Europe finds the CAC +0.98%, DAX +0.99%, FTSE +0.64%, ATX +1.19%, Swiss Mkt. +0.64% and Stockholm +1.00%.
  • Commodities are in the green as crude oil trades higher +0.48 to 119.00 and gold is up +0.4 to 887.2 this morning.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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