Plus:Capitalia, Swatch, Altadis and other European companies making headlines Monday
From Standard & Poor's European MarketScope
WOLSELEY was up £0.37 to £12.36. Interim EPS came in ahead of forecasts Merrill Lynch added that the outlook statement was as expected.
SOC GEN was up €3.50 to €124.64. The company and BNP Paribas were among the banks that have signaled interest in making a bid for ABN Amro (ABN), WSJ reported, citing unidentified people familiar with the matter. The company said that the Dutch bank has been approached by Barclays (BCS) and ING (ING).
VINCI was up €2.60 to €109.89. Francois Pinault may ally with the Mittal group as he seeks to buy a majority stake in the company, La Lettre de l'Expansion reported, citing unidentified US investors. It added that Pinault, who owns 5.1% of the company through his investment company Artemis, may have increased his stake over the past ten days.
TUI AG was up €1.66 to €18.17. UK's First Choice said it has agreed to merge with TUI Travel to create TUI Travel Plc. TUI Travel will have pro-forma revenues of £12.1 billion, EBITDA of £554 million and EBITA of £325 million. The merger will deliver pre-tax cost benefits of at least £100 million p.a. to be fully realized within three years of completion.
DEUTSCHE BANK (DB) was up €1.52 to €95.56. The FT wrote that Barclays and several other big European banks have approached ABN Amro about a takeover.
POSTBANK was up €1.77 to €61.97. The company reported 2006 net profit of €695 million, better than expected, and proposed an unchanged dividend payment of €1.25 per share for the year. The company said it does not plan a capital hike this year or next.
ASTRAZENECA (AZN)(SE) was up SEK0.50 to SEK390.00. The company's partner AtheroGenics said results from clinical study ARISE in phase III show that AGI-1067 for coronary artery disease is not having the desired effects.
ERICSSON was up SEK0.70 to SEK25.25. According to Nyhetsbyra Direkt, China Mobile has invited the company, Nokia and Siemens to submit bids to construct the first 3G-network in the country. The company said the contract is worth about US$1.3 billion, the 3G-network will be built on China's 3G-standard TD-SCDMA.
ALTADIS was up €2.80 to €46.55. Imperial Tobacco (ITY) could increase its offer for the company, reported La Gaceta. The company said talks between the two groups will commence this week.
CAPITALIA was up €0.40 to €6.63. Shares opened higher on news of the ABN bids.
ALITALIA was up €0.06 to €0.97. Market sources pointed out that an offer for the company at €1/share may be on the table.
SWATCH GROUP was up CHF15.25 to CHF318.25. The company reported a forecast-topping 2006 net income of CHF830 million, up 34% year-over-year, and launched a new buyback program worth CHF400 million. It also increased its dividend by 40%.
ABN AMRO was up €2.65 to €29.94. Barclays Bank said it will make an announcement before the open of business Tuesday following press reports that Barclays and other big European banks have approached the company about a takeover as the Dutch bank tried to fight off a campaign by activist investors.