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Stocks to Watch: Gannett, Lehman, NRG Energy, Sirius XM


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


Stocks to watch for Friday, August 15, 2008:

  • Gannett (GCI) said it will cut about 3% of its newspaper division's workforce, or about 1,000 jobs. The company said the cuts would come from its Community Publishing division, which includes the company's daily newspapers except USA Today, more than 100 Web sites and hundreds of non-daily publications, reported The Wall Street Journal. 600 will come from layoffs and the rest from retirements and unfilled vacancies.

  • Lehman Brothers (LEH) saw billionaire investor George Soros raise his stake in the company to 9.5 million shares from his previous 10,000. Lehman shares closed at $19.81 each on June 30, giving Soros's stake in the firm a market value of about $187.7 million when the quarter ended. Shares have since retreated 18%.

  • NRG Energy (NRG) was picked up by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A). The firm had 3.24 million NRG shares as of June 30. Buffett's company often asks the Securities and Exchange Commission for and receives permission to not disclose information that could hurt its trading strategy because the market likes to follow what the "Oracle of Omaha's" company does, said the Associated Press.

  • Sirius XM Radio (SIRI) completed an "ugly" debt deal in order to close the merger between the only two US satellite radio operators, according to Chief Executive Officer Mel Karmazin. The firm sold $550 million in bonds convertible into shares of the new company in order to conclude the transaction within hours of getting regulatory approval.

Market Recap

  • Asian trading was skewed to the downside with the Hang Seng -1.09%, Nikkei +0.48%, Taiwan -1.77% and Shanghai +0.56%.

  • Glancing towards Europe, we see the CAC +0.63%, DAX +0.26%, FTSE +0.06%, Swiss Market +0.48% and Stockholm -0.05%.

  • Commodities are in the red with crude oil lower -1.66 to 113.44 and gold -20.8 to 787.4 this morning.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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