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Jan 20, 2011

Rate hike fears grip stocks Asian stocks retreated | Financial & Forex Info News | The Standard


Rate hike fears grip stocks Asian stocks retreated yesterday on concern that Beijing will extend tightening measures following the release of the mainland's latest inflation figures.

21/ 01/ 2011
Pick to power gains
Cathay gets new No2
Euro zone mulls boosting buying of sovereign bonds
Direct trading of yuan gathers steam
Tax relief on agenda for Deloitte
Push to revamp loan book
SMEs jumping on yuan train
Rate hike fears grip stocks

20/ 01/ 2011
Rusal on mettle with 1b yuan bond sale
Stage seen set for boom in ETFs
Inflation tipped to mar rise of China
Impose cut-loss rule
Goldman profit tumbles 52pc
Yuan hits 17-year high as leaders get set to impress
Tax deals urged in Singapore tussle 


With Social Security, it pays to wait | MarketWatch - Personal Finance Daily


Personal Finance Daily
JANUARY 20, 2011

Thursday's Personal Finance Stories

By MarketWatch

Don't miss these top stories:
Plenty of people take Social Security early at age 62. Is that a good idea? Unless you're unable to work any longer and retiring is your only option, your best bet is to delay your benefits for a few more years.

Do you disagree? Plenty of people do. They want to get what's coming to them as soon as possible, and they worry they'll die or the system will run out of money if they delay. But for some compelling reasons to wait, read Robert Powell's column today.

Also, don't miss our latest tax-season video on refunds, and find out what's happening in the real-estate market, including a jump in existing-home sales.

Andrea Coombes , Personal Finance editor


How to hike your Social Security benefits

Until recently, retirees could claim Social Security for a few years, then pay it all back and restart their benefits at a higher rate. The federal government now has severely curtailed that, but there are other ways to make sure you get the highest benefit possible, writes Robert Powell.
Read more: How to hike your Social Security benefits.


Answers and advice for tax-filing time

Kathy Pickering of the Tax Institute at H&R Block talks to Kelsey Hubbard about some common tax questions, such as when to expect your refund and how you might benefit from the payroll-tax holiday.
Watch video: Answers and advice for tax-filing time.


Wal-Mart breaks bread with the White House

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s (WMT) latest initiative to do good has the megaretailer rubbing elbows with some very powerful people.
Read more: Wal-Mart breaks bread with the White House.

Wal-Mart seeks to rewrite food-nutrition playbook

Retail giant Wal-Mart, at the urging of First Lady Michelle Obama, said it plans to reformulate thousands of food products to make them healthier and more affordable, in a bid to boost its largest business by revenue.
Read more: Wal-Mart seeks to rewrite food-nutrition playbook.


30-year fixed-rate mortgage averages 4.74%

Reports indicating that inflation remains tame kept mortgage rates relatively steady this week, Freddie Mac's chief economist said Thursday.
Read more: 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averages 4.74%.

Facebook data center revitalizes Oregon town

Facebook Inc. is contemplating the further expansion of a data-center project in Prineville, Ore., that already covers an area equivalent to five football fields, underlining the social-networking service's need to accommodate a rapidly growing number of users.
Read more: Facebook data center revitalizes Oregon town.

Existing-home sales jump 12% in December

Sales of existing homes jumped 12.3% in December, an encouraging end to the worst year since 1997, as the collapse in house prices and a wave of foreclosures depressed activity over the course of 2010.
Read more: Existing-home sales jump 12% in December.

U.S. home construction falls in December

Construction of housing units drops 4.3% in December to annualized rate of 529,000, as 2010 ends as second worst year for builders in modern times.
Read more: U.S. home construction falls in December.

White House stalls on Fannie, Freddie reform

The White House is unsure about how to go about reforming troubled housing giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and a soon-to-be-released Obama administration report will reflect that uncertainty, regulatory observers say.
Read more: White House stalls on Fannie, Freddie reform.

Housing sector: Time to sink or swim

Housing may no longer be in the basement, but it is barely crawling up the cellar steps, writes Kathleen Madigan.
Read more: For housing sector, it's time to sink or swim.


New U.S. jobless-benefit filings fall to 404,000

Nationwide applications for new jobless benefits sink more than forecast last week, reversing a sharp spike earlier this month, according to U.S. data.
Read more: New U.S. jobless-benefit filings fall to 404,000.


Facebook's profitability tops youthful Google's

Data disclosed to potential investors shows the social-networking giant growing faster than Google Inc. (GOOG) at similar points in their histories.
Read more: Facebook's profitability tops youthful Google's.

Volcker Rule looms over Goldman's Facebook fund

Offering document, reviewed by MarketWatch, warns that new financial regulations may "disadvantage" the fund.
Read more: Volcker Rule looms over Goldman's Facebook fund.

A contrarian take on gold's big drop

As gold traders contemplate today's big drop — $26 per ounce as of late morning in New York trading — they would do well to keep in mind that bullion is only about 6% below where it stood at its early-December peak.
Read more: A contrarian take on gold's big drop.

Morgan Stanley cures bad memories

All things considered, Morgan Stanley (MS) did show improvement at a time when its main rival Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) skidded, writes David Weidner.
Read more: Morgan Stanley cures bad memories.

How Obama helped fuel a Wall Street boom

Wall Street has been thriving under President Barack Obama, but is it in spite of him or because of him?
Read more: How Obama helped fuel a Wall Street boom.

Apple shareholder scam of 2011

Watch out, Apple Inc. (AAPL) shareholders: Scam artists are going to try and cheat you out of your money, warns Brett Arends.
Read more: Apple shareholder scam of 2011.

Full crash recovery and the baby-boomer bull

More than 40% of investment-letter portfolios tracked by the Hulbert Financial Digest are ahead of where they stood in October 2007.
Read more: Full crash recovery and the baby boomer bull.


Losing the war on intolerance online

A week after Obama's call for greater national civility, the war against intolerance remains a lost cause, at least online, according to MarketWatch Editor in Chief David Callaway.
Read more: Losing the war on intolerance online.

Leading indicators show ongoing expansion

The economy's expansion is expected to continue, though "some strong headwinds" exist in the medium term, the Conference Board says.
Read more: Leading indicators show ongoing expansion.

Philly factory index slightly weaker in Jan.

The index of manufacturing activity in the Philadelphia region was slightly weaker in January, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank reported Thursday. The Philly Fed's business condition index inched lower to 19.3 in January from 20.8 in December.
Read more: Philly factory index slightly weaker in Jan.


China's Hu calls for stronger ties to U.S.

Chinese President Hu Jintao on Thursday urged closer cooperation between the United States and China on a wide range of issues, as he warned that warmer ties would require time and patience.
Read more: China's Hu calls for stronger ties to U.S.

China's worst-kept secret

Beijing needs to keep a tighter lid on its economic data as it seeks to build confidence in the numbers, writes Michael Kitchen.
Read more: China's worst-kept secret.

China overtakes Japan as world's No. 2 economy

China appears to have overtaken Japan as the world's second-largest economy, effectively displacing its Asian neighbor from a global ranking it has held since 1968.
Read more: China overtakes Japan as world's No. 2 economy.

China quarterly growth surges, inflation eases

China's economy expands more quickly than expected in the fourth quarter, while December inflation softens, providing Chinese policy makers with a confounding situation that could require further tightening to ease the rapid growth.
Read more: China quarterly growth surges, inflation eases.



Dow, S&P edge lower; F5 earnings hurt Nasdaq | Financial & Forex Info News | Reuters - Daily Investor Update

Financial & Forex Info News



Dow, S&P edge lower; F5 earnings hurt Nasdaq
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks fell on Thursday as lackluster tech and materials earnings failed to live up to heightened expectations, threatening to short-circuit a seven-week run. | Full Article

Google co-founder Page to take over as CEO
January 20, 2011 04:33 PM ET
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Google Inc co-founder Larry Page will replace Eric Schmidt in April as chief executive of the world's No. 1 search engine, the company said on Thursday. | Full Article
Hewlett-Packard shakes up board, four to leave
January 20, 2011 04:29 PM ET
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Hewlett-Packard Co on Thursday said four directors are leaving, as a company shake-up continues in the wake of the arrival of new Chief Executive Leo Apotheker. | Full Article
Morgan Stanley revenue beats; Smith Barney pays off
January 20, 2011 04:13 PM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Morgan Stanley posted stronger-than-expected quarterly revenue and retail brokerage profit jumped, validating its strategy of bolstering businesses that are less threatened by tougher regulation following the financial crisis. | Full Article
Housing and jobs numbers signal firmer economy
January 20, 2011 12:44 PM ET
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. home resales jumped more than expected in December and claims for new jobless claims last week posted their biggest decline in nearly a year, showing two key economic trouble spots on the mend. | Full Article

Stocks Fall After Mixed Earnings, Economic Data - U.S. Commentary | RTTNews Evening Market Wrap

Evening Market Wrap Thu Jan 20  2011


Jan 20, 2011 Stocks Fall After Mixed Earnings, Economic Data - U.S. Commentary While stocks closed Thursday's trading well off their worst levels, the markets were unable to make a full recovery, as mixed economic data and quarterly results led to some negative sentiment in the market place. The major averages all saw choppy trading late in the session after seeing their recovery interrupted in the middle of the afternoon. Full Article

Economic News

Jan 20, 2011 U.S. Existing Home Sales Surge Up By 12.3% In December Existing home sales in the U.S. rose sharply in the month of December, the National Association of Realtors revealed in a report on Thursday, with sales rising for the fifth time in the past six months. The report showed that existing home sales rose 12.3 percent to an annual rate of 5.28 million in December from an upwardly revised 4.70 million in November. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Philly Fed Index Indicates Slower Pace Of Growth In January While the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia released a report on Thursday showing a continued expansion in regional manufacturing activity in the month of January, the report also showed a bigger than expected slowdown in the pace of growth. The Philly Fed said its index of current activity fell to 19.3 in January from 20.8 in December, although a positive reading indicates continued growth in regional manufacturing activity. Economists had expected the index to slip to a reading of 20.0. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 U.S. Leading Indicators Index Jumps 1.0% In December Reflecting notable positive contributions from building permits and the interest rate spread, the Conference Board's index of leading U.S. economic indicators increased by much more than expected in the month of December, according to a report released on Thursday. The Conference Board said its leading economic index rose by 1.0 percent in December following an unrevised 1.1 percent increase in November. Economists had been excepting the index to increase by a more modest 0.6 percent. Full Article

Corporate News

Jan 20, 2011 Southwest Airlines Posts Higher ProfitLow-fare airline operator Southwest Airlines Co. (LUV) Thursday reported a 13 percent rise in profit for the fourth quarter, reflecting higher fares and passenger growth. Adjusted earnings also grew from last year, and total revenue managed to top analysts' consensus, rising 15 percent year-over-year. Fourth-quarter net income was $131 million or $0.18 per share, up from $116 million or $0.16 per share last year. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Union Pacific Profit Rises, Tops ExpectationsRail transportation provider Union Pacific Corp. (UNP) reported Thursday 41 percent year-over-year growth in profit for the fourth quarter, as strong freight revenues offset higher oil prices. Both adjusted earnings per share and quarterly revenues topped analysts' expectations. Railroad traffic is considered as a barometer of the overall health of the economy, as the demand for the rail services is linked to the demand for the products that are transported. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Morgan Stanley Profit Jumps On Investment Banking GrowthFinancial services company Morgan Stanley (MS) Thursday reported a significant increase in fourth-quarter profit on strong performance by Institutional Securities and Global Wealth Management businesses. Earnings applicable to the company's common shareholders jumped to $600 million from $376 million in the prior year. Earnings per share grew to $0.41 from $0.29. Full Article

Forex Commentary

Jan 20, 2011 Dollar Fights Back On Encouraging Economic News The dollar pared recent losses versus other major currencies on Thursday, supported by encouraging news about the US housing and jobs markets. Jobless claims fell sharply back toward the 400,000 mark last week, while existing home sales surged 12 percent in November. Full Article

Political News

Jan 20, 2011 Ohio Voters Say Sen. Sherrod Brown Deserves Re-ElectionIn a positive sign for Sen. Sherrod Brown's, D-Ohio, re-election prospects, the results of a Quinnipiac University poll released on Thursday showed that a plurality of Ohio voters think Brown deserves a second term in the Senate. The poll showed that 45 percent of Ohio voters said Brown deserves to be re-elected compared to 30 percent that said he does not deserve to be re-elected. Another 25 percent were undecided. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Chinese President Hu Meets With U.S. LawmakersAfter meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama and top administration officials on Wednesday, Chinese President Hu Jintao met with Congressional leaders on Thursday. While Obama's meetings with Hu seemed to focus on China's currency manipulation and economic cooperation between the U.S. and China, members of Congress pressed Hu on issues such as intellectual property theft, North Korea, and human rights violations. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 After Health Care Repeal Vote, House GOP Moves To Replacement MeasuresHaving passed a measure that would repeal the health care reform law, the Republican-led House Thursday directed several committees to begin work on the proposals they would seek to use to replace the measure. The battleground will soon shift to the committees after House Republicans claimed the symbolic victory of fulfilling what had been a major campaign promise - to vote to repeal "Obamacare." The measure passed 245 to 189. Full Article

Stocks To Watch

Jan 20, 2011 Emerging From StealthDNA in human cells codes for protein. There is also the non-coding DNA, which does not regulate the production of proteins. For long, it has been thought that this non-coding DNA is functionless and h Full Article

NYT: Afternoon Business News.- Morgan Stanley's Quarterly Profit Rises 60% to $600 Million


Morgan Stanley's Quarterly Profit Rises 60% to $600 Million

Morgan Stanley swung into a profit for the fourth quarter, as earnings jumped to 42 cents a share - good news for a Wall Street bank that has been struggling to turn around its operations.

Beijing Tightens Its Control of Vital Minerals

China invoked a seldom-used mining law to take direct control of 11 rare earth mining districts in southern China.

G.M. Names New Product Development Chief

Mary Barra was already the carmaker's highest-ranking woman, having served as vice president for global human resources.

Fired Renault Executive Sees 'Dirty Trick' by Company Rival

Matthieu Tannenbaum, who was accused of passing on secrets about the company's electric-car program, said he believed Renault had been duped.
Prescriptions Blog

Insurers Reporting Healthy Profits

UnitedHealth Group reports 10 percent earnings increase in the fourth quarter.

Chinese President Hu Jintao meets congressional leaders | The Washington Post Afternoon Edition - Today's Most Read Articles

Washington Post

1) Chinese President Hu Jintao meets congressional leaders

Chinese President Hu Jintao held closed-door meetings Thursday morning with Republican and Democratic congressional leaders, who raised concerns about business and human rights matters a day after Hu was feted at the White House but also pressed on those issues by President Obama.

2) Hubris heading for a fall

This is the vicious cycle of government that should worry Larry Summers.

3) Michelle Obama, Wal-Mart announce healthy food campaign

First lady Michelle Obama joined Wal-Mart executives at a Southeast Washington community center Thursday morning to announce a campaign by the low-priced retail giant to offer more healthful foods and push its suppliers to do the same.

4) Hu Jintao meets the free press

It was a proud moment for U.S. media as he took a question on human rights.

5) Khalid Sheik Mohammed killed U.S. journalist Daniel Pearl, report finds

A recently completed investigation of the killing of Daniel Pearl in Pakistan nine years ago makes public new evidence that a senior al-Qaeda operative executed the Wall Street Journal reporter.

6) JFK's own dirty trick

Fifty years ago next week, Richard Nixon stood uncomfortably on the Capitol's inaugural platform and watched his rival John F. Kennedy being sworn in as president. "We won" the election, Nixon fumed, "but they stole it from us."

7) Five myths about why the South seceded

One hundred and fifty years after the Civil War began, we're still fighting it - or at least fighting over its history. I've polled thousands of high school history teachers and spoken about the war to audiences across the country, and there is little agreement even on why the South seceded. Was it...

8) For Hu Jintao's state visit, a day of pomp and ceremony

It's the mantra of Washington these days: Can't we treat each other with civility and respect?

9) Who had the Worst Week in Washington? Sarah Palin.

In moments of crisis, great politicians rise to the occasion. Bad ones tend to fall flat.

10) 'American Idol' season 10: new judges, same old auditions

Worried that "American Idol" would be unrecognizable after some major revamping (new judges, new age limits, new in-house mentor who really runs the show, etc.) that took place over the last year? Good news! Nothing's changed.

Commission delivers an aged care headache | Financial & Forex Info News | The Australian Capital Circle

Financial & Forex Info News

Capital Circle Newsletter
Commission delivers an aged care headache
The PM's day, per the press office: Julia Gillard is in Adelaide today and will deliver a major speech at lunchtime. Deputy Prime Minister Wayne Swan is in Brisbane today and will spend the day in meetings.
The hunt for a new economics adviser in Tony Abbott's office has begun, with an advertisement for the position carried in the Financial Review today. And good luck and farewell to Mr Abbott's press secretary Claire Kimball, who is due to finish work today.
The Department of Parliamentary Services was in discussions last night with the contractors who employ Darryl Potts as an elevator technician in Parliament House. As Joe Hildebrand reported, Mr Potts has been declared a white supremacist by police and ruled a possible risk to public safety by a psychiatrist has been granted the right to possess a handgun.
Acting secretary of the Department David Kenny told Capital Circle last night ""We have quite strict requirements of our employees and those employees of our contractors, if we find they have been breached then we will act appropriately.'' More to come on this story later today. And Hildebrand has more here.
***Sign up to Capital Circle -- your morning shot of news and views***
Driving the day: David Uren and Lauren Wilson have the splash in The Australian with news the Productivity Commission will relase a report today that will call for assets-tested aged care.
They write: THE elderly will be compelled to pay more for their nursing home care under a revolutionary funding plan that resurrects the politically unpalatable option of older Australians selling their homes to buy government-issued accommodation bonds.

Morgan Stanley Top Views , Stock Surges | Forbes Alerts

Morgan Stanley Tops Views, Stock Surges

Morgan Stanley posted a jump in fourth quarter earnings ahead of forecasts.

Click the link below to read the full story:

Alasdair Macleod: Chinese puzzles | GATA - THE GATA DISPATCH

Alasdair Macleod: Chinese puzzles

Submitted by cpowell on 10:33AM ET Thursday, January 20, 2011. Section: Daily Dispatches 10:30aa PT Thursday, January 20, 2011
Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:
In commentary posted today at his Internet site, Finance and Economics, economist and former banker Alasdair Macleod speculates on China's gold policy. He thinks that China has vastly greater gold reserves than the official data shows and plans to be ready when the Western financial system and its gold price suppression scheme fail. Macleod's commentary is titled "Chinese Puzzles" and you can find it here:
CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.
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Warren Buffett to step down from Washington Post Co. board | The Washington Post Breaking News:

Breaking News Alert: Warren Buffett to step down from Washington Post Co. board
January 20, 2011 1:08:17 PM

Warren E. Buffett, the chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, said Thursday he would step down from the board of The Washington Post Co. this May.

Berkshire Hathaway is the largest common shareholder in The Post. Buffett, 80, is chairman of the finance committee of the board and has long advised Post Co. Chairman Donald Graham on the financial stewardship of the company

For more information, visit

Morgan Stanley Surge in Fourth Quarter | Financial & Forex Info News | Reuters - Deals Today

Financial & Forex Info News


 Morgan Stanley's surge in fourth-quarter profit indicates its strategy of diversifying its businesses to reduce a reliance on traditional investment banking operations may be paying off.

Wendy's/Arby's Group plans to sell its struggling Arby's roast beef sandwich chain to focus on the Wendy's hamburger business. The move comes at a time when other fast-food companies are trying to shed assets or even sell themselves.

The Carlyle Group's back-to-back sell-downs worth $2.6 billion of China Pacific Insurance, put the U.S. buyout fund on course for its best exit ever.

Man Group saw $1 billion of net client outflows in its third quarter, dashing hopes that last year's purchase of rival GLG would deliver a quick turnaround at the world's largest listed hedge fund manager.


Arby's chain up for sale as focus put on Wendy's
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wendy's/Arby's Group plans to sell its struggling Arby's roast beef sandwich chain to focus on the Wendy's hamburger business, which top shareholder Nelson Peltz expects to be the company's engine of growth. | Full Article

Amazon to buy full control of DVD service Lovefilm
January 20, 2011 08:25 AM ET
LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. online retailer Amazon.Com is to buy the 58 percent of British DVD and games rental firm Lovefilm it does not already own for an undisclosed price, it said on Thursday. | Full Article
Rosneft does not exclude upping stake in BP
January 20, 2011 07:00 AM ET
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Rosneft , Russia's largest oil producer, has not ruled out raising its stake in British major BP above the 5 percent it recently agreed to buy, the firm's vice president told Reuters in an interview. | Full Article
News Corp raises prospect of Sky News spin off: report
January 20, 2011 08:20 AM ET
LONDON (Reuters) - News Corp has told Britain it might separate Sky News from BSkyB to avoid a lengthy review of its move to take full control of the satellite broadcaster, the Financial Times reported. | Full Article
RBS dropped as Nielsen IPO underwriter: report
January 19, 2011 10:39 PM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - RBS Securities was removed from the underwriting group for Nielsen Holdings BV's planned $1.6 billion initial public offering after unauthorized communications on the stock sale were sent out, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday. | Full Article

Stocks May Inch Lower Ahead Of Incoming Data - U.S. Commentary | RTTNews Morning Market Briefing

Morning Market Briefing Thu Jan 20  2011


Jan 20, 2011 Stocks May Inch Lower Ahead Of Incoming Data - U.S. Commentary Stocks are on pace to open Thursday's session with modest losses, with traders digesting a sizable drop in jobless claims and a slew of earnings ahead of an influx of economic reports scheduled for 10:00 a.m. ET. The major index futures are currently all in negative territory by slim margins, with the Dow futures down by 14 points. Full Article

Economic News

Jan 20, 2011 UK Manufacturers Foresee Output Growth, Sharp Price Rises: CBI British manufacturing recovery is well on track on the back of export orders, but price pressures are mounting, the Confederation of British Industry, or CBI, said Thursday. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 U.S. Weekly Jobless Claims Fall More Than Expected First-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits fell by much more than anticipated in the week ended January 15th, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Thursday, with jobless claims pulling back near the two-year low set in late December. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 ECB Sees Temporary Rise In Eurozone Inflation Eurozone inflation rate could temporarily increase further in the next few months, reflecting commodity price developments, the European Central Bank said Thursday. In its latest monthly bulletin, the ECB said inflation rate is likely to stay slightly above its 2% target in the near-term before moderating again towards the end of the year. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Taiwan Export Orders Hit Fresh High New export orders to Taiwanese firms jumped 15.3% compared to the same month a year ago to US$36.6 billion in December - a record monthly high. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Chinese Economic Growth Unexpectedly AcceleratesChina's economy ended 2010 on a high, as growth in the last three months of the year blew past expectations despite numerous tightening measures being brought into effect, official data showed on Thursday. Full Article

Earnings News

Jan 20, 2011 Seagate Q2 Profit PlummetsHard disk drive manufacturer Seagate Technology plc (STX) Wednesday said second-quarter earnings plummeted sharply owing to lower sales and gross margin. However, both earnings and revenues matched analysts' estimates. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 UnitedHealth Q4 Profit Up; Affirms 2011 EPS GuidanceUnitedHealth Group (UNH) Thursday announced a higher fourth-quarter profit on strong revenue growth from the Health Benefits and Health Services segments. The company also affirmed its 2011 earnings outlook. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 F5 Networks Q1 Profit Soars, But Forecast Q2 Revenue Below ViewNetworking equipment maker F5 Networks Inc. (FFIV) announced Wednesday a much higher profit for the first-quarter, as revenues grew 40.7%. The results were mixed from the market's perspective, as earnings exceeded estimates, but revenues missed. Further, the company forecast lower-than-expected revenues for the second quarter. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 eBay Q4 Profit Down 59%eBay Inc. (EBAY) Wednesday reported a 59% decline in fourth-quarter income, largely due to the absence of a special gain realized in the previous year. Excluding special items, earnings grew 17% and beat estimates, thanks to an increase in Paypal revenues and greater holiday sales. The company also issued a forecast for the first-quarter and full-year 2011. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Xilinx Q3 Profit Up 42%Xilinx Inc. (XLNX), a programmable platform maker, said Wednesday that third-quarter profit rose 42% from last year, driven by a sharp revenue growth from new products such as the Virtex and Spartan families and also higher margins. Earnings exceeded expectations, but revenues fell short. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Fifth Third Sees Q4 Profit; Plans To Repay TARP FundFinancial services firm, Fifth Third Bancorp (FITB) Wednesday announced a fourth-quarter profit, a reversal from last year's loss, with provision for loan losses decreasing 79%. The earnings topped market estimates. Separately, the company announced commencing a $1.7 billion public common stock offering with proceedings intended for repurchasing preferred stock sold to the U.S. Treasury under the TARP. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Sallie Mae Q4 Profit Rises, Beats EstimatesStudent lender SLM Corp. (SLM), commonly called Sallie Mae, reported Wednesday a higher fourth-quarter profit, primarily a result of higher net interest income and lower losses from discontinued operations. The earnings also surpassed analysts' estimates. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 BHP Billiton Q2 Iron Ore Production up 4%Mining company BHP Billiton plc (BHP, BHP.AX , BBL, BLT.L) Wednesday released a production update, with second-quarter iron ore production rising 4%, while total petroleum products output declined 4%. Metallurgical coal tonnage fell 11% owing to flooding in Queensland, while energy coal tonnage increased 7%. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Sony Ericsson Reports Q4 Profit but Sales DwindleSony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB, the mobile phone joint venture of Sony Corp. (SNE, SON.L) and LM Ericsson Telephone Co. (ERIC), reported Wednesday a profit for the fourth-quarter as a result of much lower restructuring charges and higher margins. However, sales declined 13%, as price increases were offset by a 23% drop in units shipped. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Union Pacific Q4 Profit ClimbsRailroad operator Union Pacific Corporation (UNP) Thursday announced a 41% increase in fourth-quarter earnings, as volume growth, increased fuel cost recoveries, and pricing gains lifted freight revenues up by 18%. The results beat analysts' estimates. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Southwest Airlines Q4 Earnings UpAviation company Southwest Airlines Inc. (LUV) reported Thursday a higher fourth-quarter net income, with a 14.8% increase in operating revenues. Excluding special items, earnings rose 55%. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Morgan Stanley Q4 Profit IncreasesMorgan Stanley (MS) Thursday announced an increase in fourth-quarter profit, helped by higher revenues and a gain from the sale of its investment in China International Capital Corporation. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 PNC Q4 Profit Tops ViewThe PNC Financial Services Group Inc. (PNC) reported Thursday a lower fourth-quarter net income, as net interest income and net interest margin both dropped owing to soft demand for loans and a low interest rate environment. Adjusted earnings, which exclude unusual gains and integration costs, rose significantly and beat analysts' estimates. Full Article
Jan 20, 2011 Marshall & Ilsley Q4 Loss ShrinksMarshall & Ilsley Corporation (MI), a financial services firm, said Thursday its fourth-quarter loss shrunk from a year ago, with provision for loan and lease losses declining 33% and net charge-offs dropping 25%. The loss was, however, wider than analysts' expectations, as net interest income dipped 7%. Full Article

Corporate News

Jan 20, 2011 Wendy's/Arby's mulling Arby's future, possible saleRestaurant company Wendy's/Arby's Group Inc. (WEN) Thursday said it was looking at strategic alternatives or even a sale for Arby's Restaurant Group Inc. The Group seeks to focus its energy on the Wendy's brand. Full Article

Broker Ratings Changes

Jan 20, 2011 FBR Capital Markets Lowers Hudson City Bancorp (HCBK) To Underperform From Market Perform With $10.50 Down From $13 Price Target

Todays WS Events

Jan 20, 2011 Unitedhealth Group Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 8:45 AM ET Unitedhealth Group, Inc. (UNH) will host a conference call at 8:45 AM ET on January 20, 2011, to discuss Q4 10 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on to A replay of the call can be accessed by dialing 1-800-642-1687; conference ID #11908832.
Jan 20, 2011 Morgan Stanley Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 11:00 AM ET Morgan Stanley (MS) Morgan Stanley (MS) will host a conference call at 11:00 AM ET, January 20, 2011, to discuss its Q4 10 earnings results. To access the webcast, log on at To hear the live call, dial 1-877-895-9527 (US) or 1-706-679-2291 (International) with passcode 75875470. A replay of the call can be heard by dialing 1-800-642-1687 (US) or 1-706-645-9291 (International) with passcode 68986239.
Jan 20, 2011 Johnson Controls Q1 11 Earnings Conference Call At 11:00 AM ET Johnson Controls Inc (JCI) will host a conference call at 11:00 AM ET, January 20, 2011, to discuss its Q1 11 earnings result. To access the live webcast, log on to
Jan 20, 2011 Google Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 4:30 PM ET Google Inc. (GOOG) will host a conference call at 4:30 PM ET, to discuss Q4 10 earnings results, on January 20, 2011. To access the live webcast, log on to
Jan 20, 2011 AMD Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 5:00 PM ET Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) will host a conference call at 5:00 PM ET, January 20, 2011 , to discuss its Q4 10 earnings results. To listen to the live webcast, log on at

Stocks To Watch

Jan 20, 2011 Health Is Wealth...This China-based medical devices maker has nearly doubled its revenues in the past three years, and seems positioned to benefit from China's increased health care spending. Growing product offerings a Full Article

Futures slip after China data, earnings eyed | Rial & Forex Info News | Reuters Before The Bell Financ

Financial & Forex Info News

Futures slip after China data, earnings eyed
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stock index futures fell on Thursday after stronger-than-expected economic growth data from China heightened concerns the government may further tighten monetary policy. | Full Article

Morgan Stanley fourth-quarter profit jumps
January 20, 2011 07:55 AM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Morgan Stanley said fourth-quarter shareholder profit surged 60 percent as rising fees from wealth management offset the weak fixed-income trading results that have marred its competitors earnings. | Full Article
China's sizzling end to 2010 calls for tighter policy
January 20, 2011 06:44 AM ET
BEIJING (Reuters) - China finished 2010 with a bang, its growth soaring past forecasts and inflation slowing less than expected, numbers that could prod the government to intensify its easy-does-it approach to tightening. | Full Article
Spain readying fresh bank funding plan: government sources
January 20, 2011 07:52 AM ET
MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's government is finalizing plans to raise fresh funds for its troubled savings banks, officials said, as its efforts to force the country's regional administrations to cut spending began to bear fruit. | Full Article
Wendy's to sell Arby's sandwich chain
January 20, 2011 07:47 AM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wendy's/Arby's Group plans to sell its struggling Arby's roast beef sandwich chain to focus on the Wendy's hamburger chain, which its top shareholder expects to be the company's engine of growth. | Full Article