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Dec 21, 2010

MarketWatch : Most Recent Market Pulse

Most Recent Market Pulse

9:46 PM Lululemon pulls bags due to lead content
9:15 PM Hong Kong shares edge up, paced by refiners
8:34 PM Japanese stocks rise, with banks, trading firms up
7:49 PM Toyota reportedly targeting 3% sales rise in 2011
7:26 PM Japan trading firms hike China investments: report

As eligibility ends, unemployed face precarious future: MarketWatch: Personal Finance Daily

Personal Finance Daily
DECEMBER 21, 2010

Tuesday's Personal Finance stories

By MarketWatch

Don't miss these top stories:
The extension of unemployment-insurance benefits that Congress approved last week won't help all jobless Americans.

Take Deborah Brown, a 56-year-old Winterport, Maine, resident and a "99er," meaning that she's used all benefits for which she was eligible — the 99 weeks allowed in states with the hardest-hit economies. People in her situation won't see a benefit from the recently passed legislation.

Read more about Brown and her struggle in Ruth Mantell's Diary of a Recession Baby. Plus, read more personal finance news in today's pages, including why you might want to take a lesson from "Noah's Ark" to survive the financial storms of 2011.

Stories like Brown's remind us of just how severely the recession has impacted families, and how difficult it has been for them to recover. As Brown says, in normal times, 99 weeks of unemployment would be more than enough to get by on, "but we aren't in normal times."

Amy Hoak , Real Estate writer
As eligibility ends, unemployed face precarious future

There's no end in sight to Deborah Brown's daily job of looking for a job.
Read more: As eligibility ends, unemployed face precarious future.


Use ‘Noah's Ark' survival kit for 2011 storms

I'll bet you thought ol' Noah just loaded his ark with animals two-by-two? Me too. But then I discovered that the world's favorite Christmas bad boys, Scrooge and the Grinch, were stowaways.
Read more: Use 'Noah's Ark' survival kit for 2011 storms.

Commentary: 2011 economic outlook depends on which factors win

Will the New Year see a pickup or a letdown? The outlook for 2011 depends on which factors win out — the positives or the negatives.
Read more: 2011 economic outlook depends on which factors win.

Commentary: Wall Street wins, Main Street pays — again

This was the year America finally took on the power and greed of the Wall Street banks. And the banks won.
Read more: Wall Street wins, Main Street pays — again.

Commentary: How worried should you be about rising interest rates?

Will rising interest rates sabotage the stock market?
Read more: How worried should you be about rising interest rates?

Commentary: Success of TARP, financial reform top 2010's best

We live in an age when everyone is a pundit, modeling themselves on the talking heads on cable TV and the click-clacking keyboards of the bloggers.
Read more: Success of TARP, financial reform top 2010's best.


Europe's snows take toll on travelers, U.K. retailers

The European Union's top travel official slammed the region's major airports as a "weak link" Tuesday, threatening to impose new regulations after winter weather created massive travel disruptions.
Read more: Europe's snows take toll on travelers, U.K. retailers.

Financial And Forex Info News ( F & F I N) | KITCO New York Market Close Report

New York Market Close Dec 21/10 05:20 PM EST
Metals Bid Ask Change Low High
Gold 1385.50 1386.50
1380.20 1393.40
Silver     29.37     29.39
    29.01     29.59
Platinum 1721.00 1731.00
1704.00 1731.00
Palladium   752.00   757.00
  742.00   760.00

RTTNews: Evening Market Wrap: Stocks Record Solid Gains On Another Light Trading Day - U.S. Commentary

Evening Market Wrap Tue Dec 21  2010


Dec 21, 2010 Stocks Record Solid Gains On Another Light Trading Day - U.S. Commentary Stocks were able to post solid gains on Tuesday, with buying interest partly driven by optimism regarding the potential of U.S. economic growth in 2011. Market participation was limited as many stayed away from their desks ahead of the holiday weekend. Full Article

Corporate News

Dec 21, 2010 Carnival Cruises To Sunny Q4 Profit, Cautious On GuidanceCruise operator Carnival Corp. & plc (CCL, CUK, CCL.L) reported Tuesday a 28% year-over-year growth in profit for the fourth quarter, boosted by revenue growth amid higher demand due to the economic recovery. However, earnings per share for the quarter grew 31%, but missed analysts' expectations by a penny. The company also provided earnings guidance for the full-year 2010 in line with view, but projected earnings for the first quarter of 2011 below market expectations. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 TD Bank To Buy Chrysler Financial For $6.3 Bln Cash - UpdateConfirming market speculations, Canadian lender Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD, TD.TO) Tuesday announced a deal with Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. to acquire auto lender Chrysler Financial for about $6.3 billion in cash. TD expects the acquisition to close in the second quarter of its fiscal 2011. The transaction is expected to be neutral to adjusted earnings in 2011. In 2012, the first full year of operations, the acquisition is expected to add about $100 million in adjusted earnings. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 CarMax Q3 Profit Up 10%; Tops ViewUsed vehicles retailer CarMax, Inc. (KMX) on Tuesday reported a 10% increase in profit for the third quarter, reflecting a 23% increase in revenues. Earnings per share for the quarter topped analysts' expectations, while quarterly revenues also beat their estimates. Used vehicle retailers are seeing an increase in sales as consumers postpone new car purchases amid the uncertain economy. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 ConAgra Q2 Profit Drops, But Meets Street ViewPackaged foods company ConAgra Foods, Inc. (CAG) reported Tuesday a 16% year-over-year drop in profit for the second quarter, as promotional spending resulted in a meager 2% increase in sales. Excluding items, adjusted earnings per share from continuing operations for the quarter declined 13%, and came in line with analysts' expectations. The company currently expects earnings growth for the full-year 2011 to be in the low-single digits, citing the weaker-than-planned earnings in the first-half. Full Article

Forex Top Story

Dec 21, 2010 Dollar Extends Gains Versus Euro, SterlingThe dollar continued to rise versus the euro and sterling on Tuesday, ahead of tomorrow's final reading on third quarter growth figures from the United States. Back in November, a second reading on third quarter GDP growth was revised up to 2.5 percent annualized growth from the advance estimate of 2.0 percent. Economist expect another upward revision on Wednesday, possibly as high as 3 percent. Full Article

Political News

Dec 21, 2010 FCC Approves Controversial Net Neutrality RulesIn a move intended to ensure equal access to the internet, a divided Federal Communications Commission voted Tuesday in favor of adopting net neutrality rules. Under the rules, internet service providers are prohibited from blocking access to lawful websites or apps that compete with their services. The 3 to 2 vote came down along with party lines, with the Democrats on the commission voting in favor of the new rules. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Sen. Alexander Announces Support For New START TreatySen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the third-ranking Republican in the Senate, revealed Tuesday that he intends to support ratification of a new nuclear arms treaty with Russia, noting that the treaty still leaves the U.S. "with enough nuclear warheads to blow any attacker to Kingdom Come." Alexander said that his support for the New START Treaty reflects his belief that "Americans are safer and more secure with the Treaty than without it." Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Census Results Point To Potential Gains For RepublicansWith the results of the 2010 Census adding House seats in a number of traditionally Republican-leaning states, the outcome of the decennial tally of the U.S. population could prove to be a major boon for the GOP in future elections. Based on the population figures collected during the census, 12 House seats from states largely in the Northeast and Midwest will be shifted to states largely in the South and West. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Poll Shows N.J. Voters Split On Governor's Job Performance, StyleNew Jersey voters are split regarding Governor Chris Christie's job performance, according to the results of a Quinnipiac University poll released on Tuesday, with the poll also showing voters split on Christie's governing style. The poll showed that 46 percent of New Jersey voters approve of the way Christie is handling his job as Governor compared to 44 percent that disapprove. While 74 percent of Republicans approve of Christie's job performance, 65 percent of Democrats disapprove. Full Article

Wall St rises as earnings, M&A heightens optimism | Financial & Forex Info News | Reuters Daily Investor Update


Wall St rises as earnings, M&A heightens optimism
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks rose on Tuesday as solid earnings and a flurry of merger activity underpinned a steady upward trend that reinforced investor optimism for the coming year. | Full Article

Ernst & Young accused of hiding Lehman troubles
December 21, 2010 04:24 PM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Giant accounting firm Ernst & Young was sued by New York prosecutors over allegations it helped to hide Lehman Brothers' financial problems, in the first major government legal action stemming from the Wall Street firm's 2008 downfall. | Full Article
Divided FCC adopts Internet traffic rules
December 21, 2010 03:10 PM ET
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A divided Federal Communications Commission adopted Internet traffic rules on Tuesday, attracting warnings they would be rejected in the courts and threats from Republican lawmakers to overturn them. | Full Article
Nike posts higher quarterly profit
December 21, 2010 04:29 PM ET
DETROIT (Reuters) - Nike Inc on Tuesday posted a higher quarterly profit as sales rose in almost every region and category of athletic gear. | Full Article
Bankers around world brace for drop in bonuses: Reuters poll
December 21, 2010 04:08 PM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - From Wall Street to the City of London to Hong Kong's Central District, bankers are bracing for bonuses to be down 7 percent on average from a year ago, and higher salaries will only partially cushion the hit, a Reuters/IFR global poll shows. | Full Article
START appears to have support for Senate passage
December 21, 2010 04:18 PM ET
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama's strategic nuclear arms treaty with Russia secured enough votes on Tuesday to clear a Republican procedural hurdle and appeared headed toward ratification in the Senate this week. | Full Article
China urges North Korea to accept nuclear inspectors
December 21, 2010 03:52 PM ET
BEIJING/SEOUL (Reuters) - China on Tuesday urged North Korea to follow through on its offer to allow U.N. nuclear monitors into the country as a way to alleviate international tensions during a standoff with South Korea. | Full Article
Republican-leaning states gain clout from Census
December 21, 2010 03:57 PM ET
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican-leaning states in the South and West will gain clout from U.S. population figures released on Tuesday, dealing a blow to President Barack Obama and his fellow Democrats that could linger for years. | Full Article
European freeze haunts Christmas for airlines, shops
December 21, 2010 02:59 PM ET
LONDON (Reuters) - Northern Europe's big freeze wreaked more havoc on Tuesday as some airports failed to cope with the snow and retailers struggled to make up lost sales in the few shopping days left before Christmas. | Full Article
U.S. teen birthrate hits new low amid overall drop
December 21, 2010 04:32 PM ET
CHICAGO (Reuters) - The U.S. teen birthrate dropped to its lowest level in the seven decades government researchers have been tracking it, government researchers said on Tuesday. | Full Article
Health insurers face new rules over price hikes
Moms who take folic acid, iron have smarter kids
Many at high heart risk don't get enough drugs
Better HIV screening worthwhile in U.S., study finds
Heartburn drugs linked to increased pneumonia risk

Greece faces risk of junk rating | Financial & Forex Info News | The Australian Business Briefing

Rio readies $4bn bid for Riversdale
Riversdale Mining Matt Chambers RIO Tinto is expected to make a $3.8 billion friendly takeover bid for Riversdale Mining as part of its plans to increase coal production.
Big banks lead Wall St higher
Wall St Kristina Peterson BIG banks led US stocks higher today following a takeover, and the Australian dollar hit new highs against the euro and sterling.
Greece faces risk of junk rating
Greece Nathan Becker FITCH Ratings became the third major credit rating agency this month to put struggling Greece's ratings on review for a possible downgrade.
Miners welcome Argus royalty point
Don Argus Matt Chambers and Sarah-Jane Tasker MINERS have applauded a government advisory group's concession that says royalty hikes should be creditable against the federal mining tax.
Median super funds tipped to return 7pc
Super Geoffrey Newman, Wealth editor THE traditional Christmas rally is set to help the median superannuation fund return about 7 per cent in the second half of this year.
Cerberus targets US giant's wine
Wine Blair Speedy US private equity fund Cerberus Capital has not given up on the Australian wine sector.
Boeing 787 troubles loom for Qantas
Boeing 787 first flight Steve Creedy Qantas may be forced to lease extra aircraft from Airbus as evidence mounts that problems with the Boeing 787 are worse than first thought.
Incitec chief coy on Burrup bid
Incitec Pivot CEO James Fazzino Tracy Lee INCITEC Pivot has about $1 billion it could deploy to fund a new acquisition.
Financial Markets
Big banks lead Wall St higher
Wall St Kristina Peterson BIG banks led US stocks higher today following a takeover, and the Australian dollar hit new highs against the euro and sterling.
Gold flat despite stronger US dollar
Greece faces risk of junk rating
Financial Markets Coverage
Mining & Energy
Gold flat despite stronger US dollar
gold Tatyana Shumsky GOLD traded near flat today as a tumbling euro counteracted the boosting influence of safe-haven buying.
Atlas woos the Giralia next door
There's much more to come from Rio
More Mining & Energy Coverage

NYT: Afternoon Business News Update.-Cuomo Sues Ernst & Young Over Lehman



Cuomo Sues Ernst & Young Over Lehman

The lawsuit against the accounting firm is the first major legal action stemming from the collapse of the bank.

Suit Claims Use of Credit History in Hiring Hurt Black Applicants

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is seeking an injunction to stop Kaplan's use of credit histories in hiring and employment offers.

Deutsche Bank Settles Tax Shelter Case

The German bank, in a settlement with the Department of Justice, admitted to criminal wrongdoing for its participation in fraudulent tax shelters from 1996 to 2002.

LVMH Raises Its Stake in Hermès to 20%

Bernard Arnault, who controls LVMH, has built an empire by acquiring family-owned luxury brands.
Square Feet

As Other Projects Falter, Schools See an Opening

The New York School Construction Authority has swooped in to take advantage of lower construction costs, amenable landlords and available land.

Financial & Forexd Info News | KITCO London Fix Market Report

London Fix Tue Dec 21 00:00:00 EST 2010
USD 1386.00 1383.00   29.25 1715.00
750.00 749.00
UK 894.08 892.26   18.91 1106.80
484.05 482.90
EURO 1053.43 1052.43   22.23 1303.70
570.15 568.50

Stocks May Open Modestly Higher Amid Another Light Session - U.S. Commentary | RTTNews Morning Market Briefing

Morning Market Briefing Tue Dec 21  2010


Dec 21, 2010 Stocks May Open Modestly Higher Amid Another Light Session - U.S. Commentary Stock futures are showing modest upside in morning trading on Tuesday, as optimism from the Asian markets has generated some buying interest into the U.S. Nonetheless, trading is likely to be subdued for another session amid a lack of first-tier economic reports. The major index futures are currently all in positive territory, with the Dow futures up by 56 points. Full Article

Economic News

Dec 21, 2010 RBA Says Interest Rate 'Mildly Restrictive'Australia's central bank saw the current level of its benchmark interest rate as "mildly restrictive" at the December policy meeting, the minutes of the meeting revealed on Tuesday. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 UK Shoppers Still Downbeat, GfK NOP SaysUK consumer confidence remained at a depressed level heading into the Christmas shopping season, a fresh survey revealed on Tuesday. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Japan Holds Benchmark Rate At Rock Bottom Japan's central bank kept its monetary policy stance unchanged on Tuesday as it gauged the impact of its various stimulus support measures. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 German Consumer Optimism Set To Ease In January German consumer sentiment is set to ease at the start of next year, reflecting the weakness in households' economic and income expectations and reduced intention to make bigger purchases. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Portugal Warned Of Possible Rating Cut By Moody's Ratings agency Moody's on Tuesday warned Portugal of a possible downgrade to its A1 credit rating, citing rising fiscal uncertainties. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 UK Govt Borrowing Hits Record High In November U.K. public sector net borrowing rose more than expected in November to a record high, official figures showed Tuesday. Full Article

Earnings News

Dec 21, 2010 Darden Restaurants posts higher profit in Q2; backs 2011 viewEncouraged by a modest growth in its same-restaurant sales at some key units, Darden Restaurants Inc. (DRI) on Monday reported a rise in its second-quarter profit. The company also benefited from the opening of new outlets. Looking ahead, Darden reaffirmed its fiscal 2011 guidance. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Adobe Systems reverses to profit in Q4Monday, Adobe Systems Inc. (ADBE) swung to a fourth-quarter profit, as a result of sales growth and a plunge in provision for income taxes. Quarterly results surpassed the Street view. Looking ahead to the first quarter, the software maker also issued a forecast that beat Wall Street’s projections. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Jabil Circuit Q1 profit jumps, beats viewMonday, Jabil Circuit Inc. (JBL) reported a surge in its first-quarter net profit, reflecting higher revenues, margin improvements and the absence of loss on disposal of its subsidiary last year. Both core earnings and revenues beat the analysts' forecast. Additionally, the company issued its outlook for the second quarter. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 Paychex Q2 profit up, tops consensusMonday, Paychex Inc. (PAYX) posted higher profit for the second quarter, helped by a 10% growth in human resource service. Both earnings and revenue for the quarter came in above the Street view. For fiscal 2011, the company expects net income growth in the range of 4% - 6% and service revenue growth of 3% - 5%. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 ConAgra Foods Q2 profit slipsTuesday, Packaged food company ConAgra Foods Inc. (CAG) reported lower profit for the second quarter, reflecting poor consumer response to promotions and higher-than-planned inflation weighed on Consumer Foods’ profits. For fiscal 2011, ConAgra expects adjusted earnings per share to rise at a low-single digit percentage rate from its 2010 earnings. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 CarMax Q3 profit up; tops viewTuesday, Used vehicles retailer CarMax Inc.'s (KMX) third-quarter profit grew, as continuous rebound in customer traffic and improvement in sales conversion led to higher used unit sales. Both earnings and revenues for the quarter came in ahead of the Street view. Full Article

Corporate News

Dec 21, 2010 TD Bank to acquire Chrysler Financial for about US$6.3 BlnTuesday, TD Bank Group (TD, TD.TO) agreed to purchase Chrysler Financial from private equity firm, Cerberus Capital Management LP, for around US$6.3 billion in cash. TD Bank also said the acquisition is comprised of net assets of $5.9 billion and about $400 million in goodwill. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 DSM to acquire Martek Biosciences for US$1.09 bln cashTuesday, Royal DSM N.V. (RDSMY.PK) agreed to purchase Martek Biosciences Corp. (MATK) for US$1.09 billion or around EUR 829 million in cash. The Dutch company said its US$31.50 a share offer for Martek represents a 35% premium to Martek's closing share price on December 20. Full Article
Dec 21, 2010 AstraZeneca gives up motavizumab; takes $445 mln chargeTuesday, AstraZeneca Plc (AZN, AZN.L) stopped further development of motavizumab for the prophylaxis of serious respiratory syncytial virus disease, resulting in a $445 million impairment charge this quarter. The company has now requested withdrawal of the Biological License Application for motavizumab. Full Article

Todays WS Events

Dec 21, 2010 Darden Restaurants Q2 11 Earnings Conference Call At 8:30 AM ET Darden Restaurants, Inc., (DRI) will host a conference call at 8:30 AM ET on December 21, 2010, to discuss its Q2 11 earnings result. To access the live webcast, log on at
Dec 21, 2010 ConAgra Foods Q2 11 Earnings Conference Call At 9:30 AM ET ConAgra Foods, Inc. (CAG) will host a conference call at 9:30 AM ET on Decumber 21, 2010, to discuss its Q2 11 earnings result. To access the live webcast, log on at To participate in the call, dial 1-800-967-7141 (US) or 1-719-457-2707 (International). A replay of the call by dialing 1-888-203-1112 (US) or 1-719-457-0820 (International) using passcode 8587409.
Dec 21, 2010 Carnival Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 10:00 AM ET Carnival Corp. (CCL) will host a conference call at 10:00 AM ET on December 21, 2010, to discuss Q4 10 earnings results. To access the webcast, log on to
Dec 21, 2010 Paychex Q2 11 Earnings Conference Call At 10:30 AM ET Paychex Inc. (PAYX) will host a conference call at 10:30 AM ET, December 21, 2010, to discuss its Q2 11 earnings results. To access the webcast, log on at
Dec 21, 2010 Nike Q2 11 Earnings Conference Call At 5:00 PM ET Nike Inc. (NKE) will host a conference call at 5:00 PM ET, December 21, 2010, to discuss its Q2 11 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at
Dec 21, 2010 Red Hat Q3 11 Earnings Conference Call At 5:00 PM ET Red Hat Inc. (RHT) will host a conference call at 5:00 PM ET, December 21, 2010, to discuss its Q3 11 earnings result. To access the live webcast, log on to

Financial & Forex Info News : KITCO Metals Market Report


Market snapshot as of Tue Dec 21 07:01:04 EST 2010 New York time (GMT - 5)
 Bid 1386.6
 Ask 1387.6
 High 1390.9
 Low 1383.9
 Bid 29.31
 Ask 29.33
 High 29.47
 Low 29.24
 Bid 1713.0
 Ask 1720.0
 High 1725.0
 Low 1704.0
 Bid 747.0
 Ask 753.0
 High 756.0
 Low 742.0

London Fix
  Gold Silver Platinum Palladium
 $USD   1386.0  0.0  0.0  1715.0  0.0  750.0  0.0