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Stocks to Watch: Bed Bath & Beyond, Merck, Monsanto

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

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Stocks to watch for Friday, January 4, 2007:

  • Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY) reported 3Q net income of $138.2 mln, or 52 cents a share, compared with $142.4 mln or 50 cents a share a year earlier. Net sales rose 11% to $1.79 billion from $1.62 billion. Same-store sales rose 0.8% in the latest quarter, compared with a rise of 4.6% a year earlier. Gross margin fell to 41.67% from 43.48%.
  • Boeing (BA) said that in 2007 it sold a record 1,413 commercial jets while delivering 441 planes. The top seller was the 737 single aisle model followed by the larger 787 Dreamliner.
  • Intel (INTC) has broken off its alliance with the nonprofit One Laptop Per Child, aimed at selling millions of low cost computers to developing nations. The company and OLPC had argued over Intel's marketing of its own low cost laptops to the same countries the nonprofit was targeting.
  • Merck (MRK) has agreed with Addex Pharmaceuticals to develop a drug candidate for schizophrenia. MRK will pay Addex up to $702 mln in cash plus royalties under the deal. Merck is licensing ADX63365, an orally available drug candidate for the potential treatment of schizophrenia and other undisclosed indications, according to the Wall Street Journal.
  • Monsanto (MON) yesterday reported quarterly sales rose 36% to $2.1 bln on strong Latin American demand for its Roundup herbicide and seed-trait products. Shares jumped 8.5% in yesterday's trading to close up $9.45 to $120.92.
  • Sanofi-Aventis (SNY) plans to fight charges that it hid the side-effects of its anti-obesity drug Acomplia. According to Reuters, on June 13 an advisory committee said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should reject the proposed pill, called Zimulti in the United States, because of concerns it could increase suicidal thinking and depression.


Market Recap

  • Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +2.35%, Sensex +1.68%, Taiwan -1.22% and Shanghai +0.78%.
  • A quick check towards Europe finds the CAC -0.09, DAX -0.36%, FTSE +0.53%, ATX +0.96%, Swiss Mkt. +0.01% and Stockholm -1.06%.
  • Crude oil is trading lower -0.20 to 98.98 and gold is also dropping -7.3 to 861.8 this morning.

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