Great Atlantic Steers Lower

Cognos settles patent dispute; Barra slides on a downgrade; plus more stocks in the news

Checkpoint (CKP ) says a U.S. federal jury entered judgement against Checkpoint, for ID Security Systems, for more than $80M.

Cognos (COGN ) says it will pay $24M to Business Objects (BOBJ ) to settle patent litigation. Cognos also adjsted its previously announced $0.40 fiscal 2002 EPS to $0.21. Merrill and Wells Fargo upgraded.

JP Morgan downgraded Barra (BARZ ) to long term buy.

Vodafone Group (VOD ) posted $0.52 pence vs. $0.35 pence fiscal 2002 earnings per ADR (adjusted). S&P keeps avoid; and notes the company sees slower growth in data services, with the stock trading slightly above U.S. peers.

Fulcrum initiated coverage on Open Text (OTEX ) with sell.

AG Edwards upgraded Cyberonics (CYBX ) to buy from hold. On Friday the company posted a $0.32 Q4 loss vs. a $0.42 loss on 64% higher sales.

Spartech (SEH ) agreed to acquire all the stock of GWB Plastics Holding Co., which had net sales of more than $40 million during the last 12 months.

Gulf Indonesia (GRL ) board will recommend approval of a proposal by Conoco (COC ) to acquire all common stock not owned by Conoco or affiliates at price of $13.25 per Gulf Indonesia share.

Federal Agriculture (AGM ) on Friday asked asked the New York Stock Exchange to investigate trading activity. The company said recent weakness was due to aberrational, and possibly improper trading activities of short sellers.

Dynegy (DYN ) accepted the resignation of Chuck Watson as CEO and chairman. Watson will be replaced by director Daniel Dienstbier as interim chief executive, while ChevronTexaco's Glenn Tilton will fill the chairman office. Separately, the troubled energy company received a subpoena from the U.S. Attorney's Office requesting documents relating to the company's transactions, including buy and sell trades with CMS Energy.

UBS Warburg downgraded Home Depot (HD ) to hold from buy.

Merrill Lynch cut its revenue and earnings estimates for Intel (INTC ), but kept its near-term strong buy and long-term buy ratings.

Morgan Stanley upgraded Pride International (PDE ) to overweight from equal-weight.

Williams Cos. (WMB ) expects to issue $1 billion to $1.5 billion in common stock, and sell $1.5 billion to $3 billion of additional assets, and reduce costs by $100 million; it is evaluating the impact on near term EPS targets.

Reliant Resources (RRI ) confirmed receipt of subpoenas from U.S. Attorneys requesting documents pertaining to certain trading activities that have been subject of recent publicity.

AG Edwards upgraded Cyberonics (CYBX ) to buy from hold. On Friday, the company posted a fourth quarter loss of $0.32 per share, vs. $0.42 loss, on 64% higher sales.

Dot Hill Systems (HIL ) inked a multi-year pact with Sun Microsystems, under which Hill will produce and private label certain products for Sun. Hill will issue warrants to Sun that will give Sun the opportunity to own about 5% of Hill.

Thomas Weisel upgraded PepsiCo (PEP ) to buy from attractive.

DQE (DQE ) plans to divest non-core businesses, issue additional equity, and revise its dividend policy.

S&P keeps hold on Tyco International (TYC ) after news sources claim Lehman Brothers withdrew its $5 billion bid for the conglomerate's CIT unit. Unilab (ULAB ) and Quest Diagnostics (DGX ) received a request for additional information from the FTC in connection with Quest's pending acquisition of Unilab.

Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea (GAP ) delayed the filing of its 10-K due to a review relating to appropriate timing for recognition of vendor allowances and accounting for inventory.

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