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Stocks to Watch: Alcoa, Citi, Merrill, Toyota, UPS


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


Stocks to watch for Thursday, January 10, 2008:

  • Alcoa (AA) reported a 4Q profit of $632 mln, or 75 cents a share, an increase from the year ago figure of $359 mln, or 41 cents a share. Revenue fell to $7.39 billion from $7.84 billion, attributed to lower aluminum prices and the exclusion of numbers from one of its business segments which is now a joint venture.
  • Boeing (BA) was warned by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to use special precaution with its 787 Dreamliner's on-board computer system due to the vulnerability to hackers.
  • Capital One Financial (COF) plans to announce a profit loss of about 20% for 2007 amid mortgage loan troubles. COF plans to take a loan-loss provision of $1.9 billion in the fourth quarter on a managed basis, up from $998.1 million a year earlier.
  • Citigroup (C) and Merrill Lynch (MER), according to the Wall Street Journal, are expected to receive more capital infusions, mostly from foreign investors. C is expected to receive $10 bln, likely all from foreign governments and MER looks to get $3-4 bln from a Middle Eastern government investment fund, reported the Journal.
  • Microsoft's (MSFT) vice president of corporate development, Bruce Jaffe, will be leaving the company at the end of February. Jaffe had been given the task of overseeing key acquisitions in the Internet and advertising markets in order to compete with Google (GOOG).
  • Toyota (TM) reported its global sales for 2007 rose 6% despite a loss in Japan. Foreign sales rose 10% for TM. The company sold 9.37 mln vehicles in '07, boosted by its Camry and Prius models. It also expects overseas sales to increase an additional 7% in 2008.
  • UPS's (UPS) board approved an increase in funds for stock repurchases to $10 bln from $2 bln, to be completed within 24 months. According to MarketWatch, the company also said it plans to manage its balance sheet to a target debt ratio within a range of 50% to 60% funds-from-operations-to-total-debt.

Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -1.39%, Nikkei -1.45%, Sensex -1.38%, Taiwan -0.34% and Shanghai +0.38%.
  • A quick look towards Europe finds the CAC +0.04%, DAX -0.31%, FTSE -0.15%, ATX -1.25%, Swiss Mkt. -0.19% and Stockholm -0.47%.
  • Over in commodities, crude oil is trading lower -0.58 to 95.09 and gold is also down -5.5 to 876.1 this morning.

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