Monday's stocks in the news
From Standard & Poor's Equity ResearchCitigroup (C) drops after CNBC's Charlie Gasparino reports that the bank is planning "massive layoffs" in the coming months, which would be the company's second round of layoffs this year. Citigroup spokesman Mike Hanretta reportedly said: "Our business heads are planning ways in which we can be more efficient and cost-effective to position our businesses in line with economic realities."
HSBC Holdings (HBC) moves lower after Goldman Sachs downgrades to sell; says further $12 billion in provisions are likely needed for HBC's mortgage-related businesses.
E*Trade Financial (ETFC) falls after the Wall Street Journal reports that as E*Trade moves closer to being sold, prospective suitors for the company are haggling over the value of its deteriorating mortgage portfolio, people familiar with the discussions say. Rivals looking at the books in recent days, believed to be TD Ameritrade (AMTD) and Charles Schwab (SCHW), are worried that some of the assets haven't been marked to current market values.
Newell Rubbermaid (NWL) cuts 2%-4% fourth quarter sales growth forecast to essentially flat, 4% full year sales growth forecast to 3%-3.5%. It maintains EPS guidance; sees $0.35-$0.37 fourth quarter EPS from continuing operations (as reported), $1.69-$1.71 2007, and $1.53-$1.58 for 2008.
Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE) fall after UBS Financial downgrades both stocks to neutral from buy.
Meritage Homes (MTH) falls after Citigroup downgrades the homebuilder to sell from hold. Citigroup also downgrades Standard Pacific (SPF), Ryland Group (RYL), Pulte Homes (PHM), Lennar (LEN), KB Home (KBH), D.R. Horton (DHI) and Centex (CTX) to hold from buy.
Amazon.com (AMZN) and eBay (EBAY) are among the online retailers that could be in focus today, "Cyber Monday," when many employees return to work after the Thanksgiving holiday and shop for gifts on-line.
Novagold Resources (NG) plummets 10.71 to 9.53 after it and Teck Cominco Ltd. said they will suspend construction activities at the Galore Creek copper-gold-silver project in northwestern British Columbia. Notes a recent review and completion of the first season of construction indicate substantially higher capital costs and a longer construction schedule for the project.
Tesoro (TSO) says the adoption of a rights plan by its Board of Directors on Nov. 20 has resulted in a failure of a condition to Tracinda's tender offer for TSO shares. Accordingly, Tracinda is weighing its alternatives with respect to its pending cash tender offer.
Genlyte Group (GLYT) agrees to be acquired by Royal Philips Electronics in a $2.7 billion deal. Terms: $95.50 cash per GLYT share.
Rio Tinto PLC (RTP) rises after it says total 2007 dividend will be increased by 30% with a further annual total increase of no less than 20% in each of the following two years. The company also says it will spend $2.4 billion on new mines in Western Australia. Separately, a state-owned Chinese weekly, China Business, reported over the weekend, based on unnamed sources, that China Investment Corp. reportedly denies speculation that it and steelmakers Baosteel, Shougang Group and Angang Steel were working on a $200 billion bid for RTP.
Hoku Scientific (HOKU) and SolarfunPower Hong Kong Limited, a subsidiary of Solarfun Power Holdings (SOLF), announced signing of a definitive contract for HOKU's sale and delivery of polysilicon to Solarfun over an eight-year period beginning in mid-2009. Under the contract, up to approximately $306 million may be payable to HOKU during the eight-year period, subject to product deliveries and other conditions.