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Spotlight Stocks: UBS, Garmin, Mosaic, MEMC Electronics, MF Global

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

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Stocks to watch for Friday, April 4, 2008:

  • The Wall Street Journal reports the former head of Swiss investment bank UBS (UBS) is pushing for a breakup of the firm after massive subprime-related writedowns. Luqman Arnold, ousted in 2001, should add to acrimony inside the bank, already reeling from significant management shakeups.

  • Microsoft's (MSFT) bid to acquire Yahoo (YHOO) is going nowhere fast. The Journal reports the two companies met this week to try and come to terms, but Microsoft is unwilling to up its bid price and Yahoo won't move forward without a sweeter offer on the table.

  • GPS device-maker Garmin (GRMN) fell 4.6% to $53.81 yesterday after cautious comments about revenue growth from Chief Financial Officer Kevin Raukman. Garmin shares were off more earlier in the day, but pared their losses on hope the worries were overblown.

  • Chip-maker MEMC Electronics (WFR) was the biggest losing stock in the S&P 500, falling 7.1% to $70.96 after cutting its first quarter sales forecast. WFR has seen its stock price buoyed as of late with its participation in the booming market for solar power technologies.

  • Mosaic Co. (MOS), a company that makes crop nutrients, releases third quarter earnings before the bell. Analysts are looking for $0.94 per share.

  • Adding to the woes in the airline industry, Northwest Airlines (NWA) announced yesterday after the bell it would remove 15-20 airplanes from service, reduce its domestic service schedule and raise fares to improve operating results.

  • Futures and options broker MF Global (MF) popped 14.5% to $11.47 yesterday on reports the company may be selling a minority stake in itself to raise capital. Investors cheered news it would not put the entire company up for sale.

  • Motorola (MOT) is handing out pink slips to 2,600 more employees, brining the total number of layoffs to 10,000 since the beginning of last year, according to The Journal.

Market Recap
  • Asian trading closed with the Nikkei -0.72% and Sensex -3.02%. Other markets were closed due to holidays.
  • Glancing towards Europe, we see the CAC +0.22%, DAX +0.03%, FTSE +0.40%, ATX +0.60%, Swiss Mkt. +0.50% and Stockholm -0.41%.
  • Over in commodities, crude oil is trading up 0.91 to $104.24 while gold is higher by 1.60 to $907.40 this morning.
No positions in stocks mentioned.

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