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Aug 13, 2010

The Washington Post News Alert: News Alert: President backs Islamic complex near Ground Zero in New York. August 13th 2010



News Alert: President backs Islamic complex near Ground Zero in New York
Friday, August 13, 2010
--------------------

President Obama said on Friday that he supports the construction of a mosque near Ground Zero in New York, saying that opposing the project is at odds with American values. "Let me be clear: as a citizen, and as President, I believe that Muslims have the same right to practice their religion as anyone else in this country," he said at a White House ceremony marking the traditional breaking of the daily Ramadan fast, according to prepared remarks. "That includes the right to build a place of
worship and a community center on private property in lower Manhattan, in accordance with local laws and ordinances." Some leading Republicans have urged that the mosque project be halted.

For more information, visit washingtonpost.com:
http://link.email.washingtonpost.com/r/HXJVEI/QFFL3V/IJVMV2/HLW61L/3KKCW/9A/t

MarketWatch: Personal Finance Daily .- Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are fixer-uppers. August 13th., 2010


MarketWatch

Personal Finance Daily
AUGUST 13, 2010

Friday's Personal Finance stories

By MarketWatch

Don't miss these top stories:

Lawmakers are mulling changes to the way Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac do business, and their actions will affect homeowners, would-be home buyers and investors who hold mortgage debt.

The two government-owned agencies could be disbanded and a new entity created, or they could be split into separate pieces. Some observers expect the government to offer a form of debt forgiveness, which would ease the pressure on borrowers stuck paying mortgages on homes that have plunged in value.

Putting Fannie and Freddie on a firmer foundation won't be easy, and as anyone who has remodeled a house knows all too well, the job always takes longer than planned and costs a lot more than expected. You also might never speak to your contractor again.

-- Jonathan Burton , Money & Investing editor

REAL ESTATE

What happens if Fannie and Freddie disappear?

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac may be effectively insolvent, but they're backing over half of all U.S. mortgages. That has some people worried.
See full story.


Five mortgage funds for retail-hungry buyers

Mortgage rates are sliding, with the 30-year, fixed-rate loan at its lowest level in almost 40 years. That's good news for home buyers and homeowners, but not for yield-oriented investors.
See full story.


Legislative battle on horizon for future of Fannie and Freddie

Now that the most sweeping financial-reform bill since the Great Depression is law, Washington is finally getting around to dealing with the hard part: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
See full story.


Remodeling Fannie and Freddie

MarketWatch's Alistair Barr explains how a replacement for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac might work and what's at stake, including the value of your home.
 Watch the video report.


When condo owners run afoul of homeowners' associations

One homeowner can't refinance because of the lawsuit his homeowners' association is facing. Elsewhere, a condominium member wonders what course his HOA can take to deal with an owner who is flouting association rules. Lew Sichelman offers some answers in Realty Q&A.
See story on when condo owners run afoul of homeowners' associations.


INSURANCE

What not to tell your insurer after an accident

Everyone knows, or should know, that you should never lie to your insurance company -- that would be fraud -- but what you say and what you do does matter.
See Jennifer Waters' Consumer Confidential.


MONEY & MARKETS

This gold fund doesn't glitter

Gold looks like such a sure thing that investors might be tempted to really load up, thinking they've got a sure thing. Alas, if they make that bet using the ProFunds Precious Metals UltraSector fund, they'll be making the Stupid Investment of the Week.
See Stupid Investment of the Week.


SEC plans fall short of full fee disclosure, critics say

Fund-industry observers are lobbing new criticism at regulators' recent efforts to limit mutual-fund sales fees, already under fire for being too weak.
See FundWatch.


Junk-bond market hits record

Move over, Michael Milken. Junk-bond sales hit a record this week as low interest rates fuel a new search by investors for higher yields.
See full story.


ECONOMY & POLITICS

Consumer confidence edges up in August

Consumer confidence in August edged upward but remained in depressed territory, according to a report released Friday.
See full story.


What we learned about the economy

Scan the latest charts for trends in productivity, trade, retail sales and other indicators.
See full story.




MarketWatch : Weekly Roundup.-MarketWatch's Top Stories Of The Week .August 13th., 2010


MarketWatch

Weekly Roundup
AUGUST 13, 2010

MarketWatch's top stories of the week

By MarketWatch



If the so-called flash crash of May 6, still an unsolved mystery three months later, taught us one thing, it was perspective. Or perhaps it numbed our senses.



Either way, it's worth noting that when the market's "fear gauge," the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), was described as spiking this Wednesday, with the Dow industrials down about 275 points, it was merely making a 15% upward break to about 27. During the week of the flash crash, the volatility index soared almost 90% to a reading near 50. (It should also be noted that the VIX rocketed all the way into the 80s in the throes of the 2008 financial crisis.)

Wednesday's bruising outing for stocks, which ended with the Dow (DJIA) down 265 points, all but sealed the market's fate for the week. On the week, the blue-chip gauge fell 3.3%; the S&P 500 (SPX), 3.8%; and the Nasdaq Composite (COMP), 5%.

Stay tuned to MarketWatch news for coverage of breaking news and developing stories.

Please take a moment to check out these market previews from our radio and video teams to find out what's on tap for the coming week:

-- Tim Rostan and Michelle Donley , editors

One small step for Fed

Federal Reserve monetary-policy makers decided this week to take a small easing step, after judging the economic recovery wasn't as strong as it previously anticipated. The Federal Open Market Committee announced that it would reinvest maturing mortgage-backed securities in government debt so that its balance sheet does not shrink. Read about what the Fed's statement means .

British central bank cuts forecast

The Bank of England pulled back on growth expectations for the British economy in its quarterly inflation report, citing declining confidence, tight credit conditions and the government's planned deficit-reduction measures. Assuming official interest rates follow market expectations and the central bank maintains its bond-purchase program, growth would return to an annual rate of about 3% by the end of 2011, vs. a May forecast of about 3.6%. Read more about the Bank of England's outlook .

Calling odds for double-dip recession



The U.S. economy has a "significant likelihood" of entering a double-dip recession if the government doesn't step in to help the unemployed, economist Robert Shiller told the MarketWatch Radio Network. The Yale professor and author of the book "Irrational Exuberance" pinned the probability of a double-dip recession at better than 50-50. Read more about Shiller's predictions .

China sees surge in exports

China's trade surplus widened to $28.7 billion in July from June's $20.02 billion, outpacing the consensus forecast by a third, as exports jumped to a record for the month, Chinese customs authorities reported. Read about what the Chinese trade surplus means .

GM's executive churn

After posting a second straight quarterly profit, General Motors announced that Ed Whitacre Jr. would step down as chief executive officer Sept. 1, ending nine months behind the wheel. Whitacre, who became CEO just last December, is to be replaced by Dan Akerson, a fellow telecom-industry veteran who joined GM's board of directors last summer. Read more about GM's leadership .

Dealing for Dynegy

Dynegy (DYN) will be acquired by Blackstone Group (BX) in a deal valued at $4.7 billion, including the assumption of debt. Terms of the deal call for Dynegy to be bought out by Blackstone, the private-equity giant, for $4.50 a share, representing a premium of 62%. Blackstone, in turn, is selling four Dynegy electrical power plants to NRG Energy (NRG). Read more about the Dynegy deals .

Caution from Cisco

Cisco Systems (CSCO) reported a 79% jump in profit for its fourth quarter, as sales of networking gear surged. But the San Jose, Calif.-based company's sales failed to beat Wall Street's expectations, and a statement from Chief Executive John Chambers raised the possibility that Cisco could be expecting a slowdown from the global economy. Read more about Cisco's results and forecast .

Hewlett-Packard's battered culture



Five years ago, a smiling Mark Hurd posed for a picture in front of the tiny garage in Palo Alto, Calif., where Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) was born. The new H-P chief executive was there to rededicate the fabled spot, now designated as the birthplace of Silicon Valley. Last week, Hurd stepped down in disgrace, capping a tumultuous decade for the iconic Silicon Valley business that saw Hewlett-Packard morph into a powerful global behemoth, but one that seems to get caught in one embarrassing scandal after another. Read about the culture of H-P .

Golden opportunity for H-P

The traumatic departure of the once-revered Hurd gives Hewlett-Packard a chance to replace him with a chief executive who can try to focus the company on innovating on its own again. Now that H-P's financial house is in order, it needs to find an executive who can both stay committed to the current financial rigors, as well as have a longer-term view beyond merely mimicking IBM's (IBM) playbook. Read Therese Poletti's column on H-P .

Avoiding sexual-harassment problems

Hewlett-Packard said Hurd did not violate the company's sexual-harassment policy, but the unfolding drama raises questions: What constitutes sexual harassment, and how should firms address the issue? Demoting a worker who turns down a kiss by the copier is a clear no-no. But for more debatable actions, strict policies can help companies avoid problems, labor lawyers say. Read tips for avoiding sexual-harassment issues .

CNBC : Evening Brief: Latest Stories.- Would Cutting Corporate Taxes Jumpstart US Economy?. August 13th., 2010



LATEST STORIES


»click here to see the latest top stories from CNBC.com

LATEST VIDEO

  • CNBC.com Market Outlook
    A look at the week's top business news stories, which stocks the pros are recommending and what you should watch for next week, with CNBC's Courtney Reagan.
    » Watch Video
NYSE Market Wrap
CNBC's Scott Wapner reports on the trading
day from the NYSE.
» Watch Video 

Social Security Solutions
Tackling solutions for the next 75 years,
with Alice Rivlin, Brookings Institution and
Stuart Butler, Heritage Foundation.
» Watch Video

America's Most Expensive Stadium
A sneak peak of the new $1.6 billion Meadowlands
stadium, the new home of NFL's Jets and Giants,
with Marl Lamping, CEO of the New Meadowlands
Stadium Company, and CNBC's Darren Rovell.
» Watch Video  

Wheat Prices Continue to Climb
Paul Penner, a wheat farmer and president of the
Kansas Association of Wheat Growers, discusses
what's behind the climb in wheat prices.
» Watch Video 

RTTNews : Evening Market Wrap: Retail Sales Rise In July Amid Rebound In Auto And Gas Sales.August 13th., 2010

Evening Market Wrap Fri Aug 13 17:01 2010 

Commentary

Aug 13, 2010 Mixed Data Drives Stocks To Moderate Losses Ahead Of Weekend - U.S. Commentary Stocks ended a choppy trading session moderately lower Friday, as mixed readings from the economic front led to some late day selling in the equity markets. The move came on relatively low volume amid the summer trading season, although it was still representative of a recent downturn in sentiment that left traders little willing to dabble in risky assets ahead of the weekend. Full Article

Economic New.

Aug 13, 2010 Retail Sales Rise In July Amid Rebound In Auto And Gas Sales Retail sales saw a modest increase in the month of July, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Friday, with the increase in sales for the month coming amid a notable rebound in auto and gasoline sales. The report showed that retail sales increased by 0.4 percent in July following a revised 0.3 percent decrease in June. Economists had expected retail sales to increase by 0.5 percent compared to the 0.5 percent drop originally reported for the previous month. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Rebound In Energy Prices Contributes To Higher Consumer Prices With energy prices showing a significant increase in the month of July, the Labor Department released a report on Friday showing that consumer prices for the month increased by a little more than economists had been anticipating. The Labor Department said its consumer price index rose by 0.3 percent in July after edging down by 0.1 percent in June. Economists had been expecting the index to increase by 0.2 percent. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Consumer Sentiment Index Rises To 69.6 In August Consumer sentiment saw an improvement in the month of August, according to a report released by Reuters and the University of Michigan on Friday, with their consumer sentiment index rising roughly in line with economist estimates. Full Article

Earnings News

Aug 13, 2010 J.C. Penney Turns To Q2 Profit; Slashes 2010 Profit View Department store chain J.C. Penney Co., Inc. (JCP) reported Friday a profit for the second quarter compared to a loss last year, but provided downbeat earnings guidance for the third quarter and slashed its 2010 forecast, blaming the uncertain consumer climate. Full Article

Forex Top Story

Aug 13, 2010 Dollar Rebounds Versus Euro Amid Economic Concerns The dollar continued its comeback versus the euro and fell no further against the resurgent yen on Friday, as traders sifted through a pile of mixed economic data from around the world. Risk aversion remained the modus operandi on Friday, despite a relatively upbeat reading on the European economy. Full Article

Mergers

Aug 13, 2010 IBM To Buy Unica For $480 Mln - Update International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) announced Friday a definitive agreement to acquire marketing software company Unica Corp. (UNCA) for $21 per share in cash, or at a net price of about $480 million, after adjusting for cash. Following the news, UNCA shares are currently trading around 118% higher in pre-market activity on Nasdaq. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Billionaire Ron Burkle Launches Proxy War Against Barnes & Noble Supermarket mogul and billionaire activist investor Ronald Burkle has launched a proxy war Thursday to gain control of bookstore chain Barnes & Noble, Inc. (BKS) after negotiations failed on a potential agreement with his investment firm Yucaipa Cos. over the doubling of their stake in the company. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Blackstone Affiliate Agrees To Acquire Dynegy For $4.7 Bln. U.S. power producer Dynegy (DYN) has agreed to be acquired by an affiliate of The Blackstone Group for approximately $4.7 billion, including the assumption of existing debt. In a deal announced Friday morning, Dynegy stockholders will receive $4.50 in cash for each share they own, representing a 62 percent premium to Thursday's closing share price. Full Article

Political News

Aug 13, 2010 Economy And Jobs Seen As Country's Most Important ProblemsAmericans remain particularly concerned about the economy and jobs, according to the results of a Gallup poll released on Friday, with those issues easily outpacing all others less than 3 months ahead of the midterm elections. The poll showed that 30 percent of Americans think that the economy is the most important problem facing the country, while 28 percent said unemployment/jobs is the most important. Full Article

NYT: Afternoon Business News Update:Rising Profits Are Good, but There's a Catch. August 13th., 2010



BUSINESS:

Off the Charts

Rising Profits Are Good, but There's a Catch

 
By FLOYD NORRIS
Increased profit margins may soothe some investors, but sales haven't kept up.

A Warning About a Weak Link in Secure Web Sites

By MIGUEL HELFT
Security experts say it is becoming difficult to trust the organizations that guarantee a Web site is authentic.
Patient Money

Filling In the Insurance Gap for Adult Children

By MICHELLE ANDREWS
Under the health law, young adults can be covered by their parents' insurance. Still, many are likely to face a gap in coverage.

Students at Japanese Sushi Schools Aim for a Job Overseas

 
By MIKI TANIKAWA
Many aspiring chefs now look abroad as Japan's traditional restaurants are being replaced by fast-food counters and opportunities expand in Europe and Latin America.

German Surge Pushes Growth in Europe Above Forecast

 
By JACK EWING and MATTHEW SALTMARSH
 The euro-area economy grew 1 percent in the second quarter, due largely to Germany's best performance since reunification.

U.S. Markets at Close Snapshot : August 13th., 2010.



U.S. MARKETS AT CLOSE SNAPSHOT

FOX BUSINESS:

Market Snapshot
Index Last Change %Change  
DJIA 10,303.15 -16.80 0.16%  
Nasdaq 2,173.48 -16.79 0.77%  
S&P 500 1,079.25 -4.36 0.40%  
FOX 50 783.03 -3.05 0.39% Hilighted
DIJA Chart
 

Real Clear Politics Friday

Sacrilege at Ground Zero - Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post
Ground Zero for Free Speech - Katha Pollitt, The Nation
Voter Volatility at Historic Levels - Gerald Seib, Wall Street Journal
Where Did All Those 'Green Shoots' Go? - John Merline, AOL News
Obama's Midterm Roadmap - Bob Shrum, The Week
Race Card Payment Coming Due - Jonah Goldberg, National Review
GOP Candidates Give Dems Hope - Eugene Robinson, Washington Post
Who's the Radical? - David Harsanyi, Denver Post
Huckabee a Potent Ally for Conservative Candidates - Scott Conroy, RCP
The Coming Fannie and Freddie Bailout - Paul McMorrow, Boston Globe
Congress Helps Its Own - Diana Furchtgott-Roth, RealClearMarkets
Spending Posts Now Liability for Lawmakers - Carl Hulse, New York Times
Has the White House Gone Tone Deaf? - Alex Wagner, Politics Daily
Liberals Still Want Obama to Succeed - Robert Kuttner, Boston Globe
The Anti-Obama Democrats - Kimberley Strassel, Wall Street Journal
The Fed's Repeating Japan's Monetary Mistake - Paul Krugman, NY Times
Bean-Counters and Baloney - Thomas Sowell, RealClearPolitics
Election 2010: Boxer Slips Against Fiorina | McCollum Up Over Scott

Editorials

The State of the War in Afghanistan - New York Times
Bailout Bribery - Las Vegas Review-Journal
Resuming Gay Marriages, Wisely - Los Angeles Times
White House's Keynesian Bag of Tricks is Empty - The Oklahoman

Market Watch: Industry- Financial Markets :Ffinancial news.- The Fed: Hoenig calls Fed policy 'dangerous gamble'


MarketWatch
   INDUSTRY: FINANCIAL SERVICES

The Fed: Hoenig calls Fed policy 'dangerous gamble'

By Greg Robb MarketWatch


In a sharp critique of Federal Reserve policy from a sitting policy member, Thomas Hoenig said Friday that zero interest rates were “a dangerous gamble” in a period of moderate growth. 
See full story

CVB CFO postpones retirement to help on SEC probe
By Alistair Barr MarketWatch


CVB Financial Corp. Chief Financial Officer Edward Biebrich has postponed his retirement to help the California bank deal with a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation. 


By MarketWatch


Thursday's Currencies column gave an incorrect price for the dollar index . It has been corrected. See Thursday's Currencies. 


FOX BUSINESS : Breaking News.- Consumer Sentiment Edges Up. August 13th., 2010


Consumer Spending Overhead New 276
Losing Faith in Recovery Consumer sentiment inched up in early August to 69.6, but Americans see little improvement in the economy ahead.




THE MOST POWERFUL NAME IN BUSINESS NEWS

Watch Out: More 'Stimulus' is Coming

Is the World Broke? The White House is cooking up another round of major government meddling.

Wall Street Wavers on Data

Stocks were bouncing in and out of red territory after being hit with consumer economic reports.

Deflating Concerns

Consumer prices rose 0.3%, the first rise in four months, thanks to higher energy costs.

Game On: Hedge Fund Bets on Sports

Hedge funds are taking advantage of inefficiencies in the sports betting marketplace.

Retailers Still Struggling

Retail sales rose 0.4% in July but the gains were concentrated in auto and gasoline station sales.

The GATA Dispatch: Martin Nennecke on CNBC: Most market manipulation suppresses commodities, gold. August 13th., 2010

Martin Hennecke on CNBC: Most market manipulation suppresses commodities, gold

9a ET Friday, August 13, 2010
Dear Friend of GATA and Gold (and Silver):
Gold price suppression was discussed openly on CNBC on Thursday, this time by Tyche Group's associate director, Martin Hennecke, interviewed from Hong Kong. Hennecke remarked that most global markets are manipulated, that most manipulation aims to suppress commodity prices, and that gold particularly is suppressed by central bank intervention. GATA doesn't seem to have any direct contact with Hennecke but as much as anyone in the financial world he seems to reflect GATA's point of view. His interview on CNBC is a little more than five minutes long and you can watch it here:
http://www.cnbc.com/id/15840232/?video=1565354860&play=1
CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

Join GATA here:
Toronto Resource Investment Conference
Saturday-Sunday, September 25-26, 2010
Metro Toronto Convention Center, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
http://www.cambridgeconferences.com/index.php/toronto-resource-investmen...

The Silver Summit
Thursday-Friday, October 21-22, 2010
Davenport Hotel, Spokane, Washington
http://www.silversummit.com/

New Orleans Investment Conference
Wednesday-Saturday, October 27-30, 2010
Hilton New Orleans Riverside Hotel
http://www.neworleansconference.com/redirect.php?page=index.html&source_...

* * *
Support GATA by purchasing a colorful GATA T-shirt:
http://gata.org/tshirts
Or a colorful poster of GATA's full-page ad in The Wall Street Journal on January 31, 2009:
http://gata.org/node/wallstreetjournal
Or a video disc of GATA's 2005 Gold Rush 21 conference in the Yukon:
http://www.goldrush21.com/
* * *
Help keep GATA going
GATA is a civil rights and educational organization based in the United States and tax-exempt under the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Its e-mail dispatches are free, and you can subscribe at:
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To contribute to GATA, please visit:

http://www.gata.org/node/16

FOX BUSINESS : Breaking News.- Reail sales rose were concentrated in auto and gasoline station sales


Consumer Retail Spending New 276
Retailers Still Struggling Retail sales rose 0.4% in July but the gains were concentrated in auto and gasoline station sales.


THE MOST POWERFUL NAME IN BUSINESS NEWS

Euro Zone Posts Strong GDP

Is the World Broke? European economic growth accelerated sharply in the second quarter.

Deflating Concerns

Consumer prices rose 0.3%, the first rise in four months, thanks to higher energy costs.

Stocks Struggle at Open

The markets opened slightly in the red as traders work through consumer price data and retail sales.

India Warns Tech Companies

India will go after any company, including Google after cracking down on BlackBerry.

Oracle Sues Google Over Android

Oracle sued Google alleging patent and copyright infringement in the development over the Android.

RTTNews Daily Market Analysis.- Patchy Retail Sales Report May Apply Brakes On Bargain Hunting. August 13th., 2010

Daily Market Analysis Fri Aug 13 09:21 2010 

Aug 13, 2010 Patchy Retail Sales Report May Apply Brakes On Bargain Hunting - RTTNews Daily Market Analysis The major U.S. index futures are pointing to a slightly lower opening on Friday despite expectations that bargain hunting will support the markets following three straight sessions of losses. Economic data released from across the Atlantic were encouraging, with most economies in the euro zone region reporting forecast-beating economic growth for the second quarter. However, a Commerce Department report released earlier in the day showed that retail sales in the U.S. rose slightly less than economists' expectations. Full Article

WSJ Deals Alerts.Dynegy to Be Acquired by Blackstone in $4.7 Billion Deal. August 13th., 2010

Deals Alert
from The Wall Street Journal



Dynegy says it plans to be acquired by the Blackstone Group for $542.7 million. Including the assumption of debt, the companies value the deal at $4.7 billion. Dynegy said the deal represents a 62% premium from its closing price Thursday.

Also Friday, NRG Energy said it agreed to pay $1.36 billion in cash for four gas-fired power plants owned by Dynegy.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703960004575427131070863428.html?mod=djemalertDEALS

MarketWatch - Financial News.- Hong Kong Tightens Mortgage Rules amid " Bubble "






INDUSTRY- FINANCIAL SERVICES




Hong Kong tightens mortgage rules amid 'bubble'  
By Chris Oliver MarketWatch



The Hong Kong Monetary Authority will tighten some types of mortgage lending to guard against credit risks. 








RTTNews : Daily Stocks to Watch: Friedman's strong quarter

Daily Stocks to Watch Fri Aug 13 09:02 2010 


Stocks To Watch

Aug 13, 2010 Friedman's strong quarter - Stocks To WatchSteel processing company Friedman Industries, Inc. (FRD) swung to a first-quarter profit, as sales more than doubled. Net income for the quarter was $1.44 million or 21 cents per share, compared to year-ago net loss of $0.16 million or 2 cents per share. Sales jumped to $29.22 million from $12.25 million last year. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Introducing RTT Growth & Value StocksThe Growth & Value Stocks service is designed with a disciplined approach of extensive fundamental analysis to cater swing traders and investors. The service identifies growth stocks that are generally overlooked and value stocks that are usually undervalued by the market. The growth and value stocks we select have significantly outperformed the broader market indices. Full Article

RTTNews : Morning News /Morning Market Briefing.- Stocks May Show A Lack Of Direction As Traders Digest Data - U.S. Commentary . August 13th., 2010

Morning Market Briefing Fri Aug 13 09:01 2010 

Commentary

Aug 13, 2010 Stocks May Show A Lack Of Direction As Traders Digest Data - U.S. Commentary Stocks may show a lack of direction in early trading on Friday, as the markets are digesting mixed July retail sales and consumer prices data while awaiting readings on consumer sentiment and business inventories. The major index futures are mixed, with the Dow futures up by 3 points. Full Article

Economic News

Aug 13, 2010 Eurozone Q2 Economic Growth Tops Expectations Eurozone economic growth topped economists' expectations in the second quarter, showing the biggest expansion in more than three years. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Retail Sales Rose 0.4% In July Retail sales saw a modest increase in the month of July, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Friday, with the increase in sales for the month coming amid a notable rebound in auto and gasoline sales. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Consumer Prices Rose 0.3% In July With energy prices showing a significant increase in the month of July, the Labor Department released a report on Friday showing that consumer prices for the month increased by a little more than economists had been anticipating. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 N.Z. June Retail Sales Climb 0.9% New Zealand retail sales climbed more than expected in June driven by core sales, data released by Statistics New Zealand showed on Friday. Retail sales volume climbed at the fastest rate in over three years in the June quarter as a whole. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 German Economy Registers Record Growth In Q2; Beats Expectations The German economy recorded its biggest growth since its '1991 reunification' in the second quarter. The better-than-expected growth was underpinned by robust exports and investment. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 French Q2 GDP Growth Tops ForecastThe French economic growth accelerated more than expected in the second quarter, boosted by consumer spending and inventory building. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 BoJ Minutes: Upside, Downside Economic Risks PersistMembers of the Bank of Japan's monetary policy board said that both upside and downside risks to the Japanese economy are increasing, minutes from the bank's July 14-15 meeting revealed on Friday - adding that the pace of Japanese economic growth may slow. Full Article

Earnings News

Aug 13, 2010 Nordstrom Q2 profit rises 39%, meets Street; backs FY10 EPS viewThursday, Nordstrom Inc. (JWN) reported a 38.6% increase in profit for the second quarter, as sales grew 12.7% from the past year. Same store sales for the period rose 8.4% year-over-year. Earnings per share came in line with the Street view. Looking ahead, the company reiterated its full-year earnings outlook. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Autodesk Q2 profit up 14%, beats Street; guides Q3Thursday, Autodesk, Inc. (ADSK) reported more than a five-fold jump in its second-quarter profit, reflecting a 14% growth in revenue and lower restructuring charge. Adjusted earnings came in well above the Street view. Looking ahead, the company guided its third-quarter revenue and earnings to come in line with the consensus estimate. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Nvidia posts Q2 net loss widens; guides Q3 revenue below StreetThursday, Nvidia Corp. (NVDA) posted a wider net loss for the second quarter, hit by hefty inventory write-down and a charge related to a weak die/packaging material set. Adjusted profit advanced 88% on both higher revenues and improved margins. Looking ahead, the company guided third-quarter revenue below the current estimate of analysts. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 DeVry Q4 profit rises 93% on higher student enrollmentsThursday, DeVry Inc. (DV) reported almost a two-fold rise in fourth-quarter profit, helped by higher tuition fees and rise in student enrollments. Revenues for the period grew 28% and came in above the Street view. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Dillard's swings to Q2 profit on lower costsFriday, Dillard's Inc. (DDS) said it returned to profit in the second quarter, despite a 2.7% dip in sales, reflecting improved gross margins and lower operating costs. The company noted that merchandise gross margin expanded 270 basis points, as comparable store inventory came down 6% year-over-year. Dillard's also recorded lower operating costs, reflecting savings in payroll and advertising expenses. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 J. C. Penney posts profit in Q2; guides Q3, FY10 EPS below consensusFriday, J. C. Penney Company, Inc. (JCP) posted a second-quarter profit, compared to a break-even last year. Comparable store sales increased 0.9%, while total sales edged down 0.1%. Earnings per share came a penny above the Street view, while revenue fell short of estimates. The company noted that gross margin for the period expanded 90 basis points to 39.4%. Looking ahead, J. C. Penny guided both third-quarter and full year earnings below the current estimates of analysts. Full Article

Corporate News

Aug 13, 2010 BP to pay $50.6 mln fine for Texas refinery explosionFriday, BP plc (BP) said it agreed to pay $50.6 million fine for failing to rectify safety hazards at its Texas City oil refinery following a deadly explosion in 2005 that killed 15 workers and injured 170 others. The fine is the largest ever penalty imposed by Occupational Safety and Health Administration. BP also agreed to take immediate steps to safeguard teh personnel working presently at the refinery, and to apportion at least $500 million towards the same. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Oracle sues Google for copyright infringement by AndroidThursday, Oracle Corp. (ORCL) said it sued Google Inc. (GOOG), alleging that the latter's Android Operating System infringes on Oracle patents and copyrights pertaining to Java. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 Blackstone Group to buy Dynegy for about $4.7 blnFriday, The Blackstone Group L.P. (BX) said it signed an agreement for its affiliate to acquire Dynegy Inc. (DYN) for about $4.7 billion, including the assumption of existing debt. As per the deal, Dynegy stockholders will get $4.50 in cash for every share owned. This represents a 62% premium to Thursday's closing share price. The companies expect the transaction to close by the end of year 2010. Full Article
Aug 13, 2010 IBM to buy Unica for $480 mln cashFriday, International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) said it agreed to buy Unica Corp. (UNCA) for about $480 million in cash. As per the terms of the transaction, IBM would purchase every share of the target company for $21. The firms expect the deal to close in the fourth quarter of 2010. Full Article

Broker Ratings Changes

Aug 13, 2010 FBR Capital Markets Initiates SuccessFactors Inc. (SFSF) At Outperform With $26 Price Target

Todays WS Events

Aug 13, 2010 J. C. Penney Q2 10 Earnings Conference Call At 9:30 AM ET J. C. Penney Company, Inc. (JCP) will host a conference call at 9:30 AM, ET, to discuss Q2 10 earnings results, on August 13, 2010. To access the live webcast, log on at jcpenney.net To hear the live call, dial (877) 407-0778, or (201) 689-8565 (International). A replay of the call can be heard by dialing 877-660-6853 with account No. 286 and conference ID 350563.