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Jan 21, 2011

nsider Trading Probe Reveals Temptations for 'Experts' | Latest News and Videos | CNBC Evening Brief


LATEST STORIES


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


Special Coverage: Pricing Pain, Pricing Power
CNBC 360 Squawk Box Monday 6:00AM-9:00AM ET
Food inflation...taking a bite out of consumers and the global economy. Who gains the most-- and how do you get a piece of the pie? Plus: Earnings from fast food giant McDonalds. The first word on the numbers and pre market reaction on Squawk Box, Monday 6:00AM-9:00 ET.
»more info


LATEST VIDEO

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

New And Updated Articles | Business: Schumpeter | The economist



New or updated articles January 21st 2011

Business: Google turns a new Page
Changes at the top of the world's biggest internet company
Full article

United States: More pennies, please
A plea for better science teaching in schools
Full article

Britain: Andy Coulson goes
The prime minister's spin doctor resigns
Full article

Africa: Church and State
In South Sudan, where the state is weak, the church is king
Full article

Europe: Not so fast
A guide to the various debates surrounding euro governance
Full article

Daily chart: Don't drink and drive
Why it is increasingly hard to distinguish oil from wine
Full article

Economics: Bringing tears to Indians' eyes
Why the price of onions is so important
Full article

Business: Schumpeter
Our management columnist's Indian sojourn
Full article

Online debate: Cities
Our debate is over with 51% of the vote supporting restrictions on urban growth. You may still comment until midnight
Full article

NYT Breaking News Alert : MSNBC Says It Has Ended Keith Olbermann's Contract

Breaking News Alert
The New York Times
Fri, January 21, 2011 -- 9:06 PM ET
-----

MSNBC Says It Has Ended Keith Olbermann's Contract

In a statement, MSNBC said, "the last broadcast of 'Countdown

with Keith Olbermann' will be this evening."

Read More:

http://www.nytimes.com?emc=na

Real-estate dreams turn to an organized house | MarketWatch Personal Finance Daily

MarketWatch
Personal Finance Daily
JANUARY 21, 2011

Friday's Personal Finance Stories

By MarketWatch



Don't miss these top stories:
Do you yearn for a bigger home? I'm in the lucky position of owning a home that's just the right size. But a better organized space? On that front, there's always room for improvement, to my mind. I can but dream.

To make dreaming easier, check out Steve Kerch's story for some real-estate eye candy: Pictures of six types of rooms that people in a recent survey said are "must-haves" in their next home. I so want that laundry room.

Also, don't miss Eva Rosenberg's TaxWatch column for a look at all the various options for preparing and filing your return for free.

Of course, for many people these days, their "next home" is a dream deferred. It's tough to find financing to buy, and if you own a home already, it's a difficult time to sell. Watch Amy Hoak's video interview with real-estate writer Lew Sichelman for his take on the real-estate outlook for 2011. It's not an optimistic outlook. Back to dreaming, I guess …

Andrea Coombes , Personal Finance editor

REAL ESTATE

The 6 must-have spaces in your next home

Homeowners say these are the six most important spaces they will concentrate on when choosing a new home or deciding what to upgrade in the one they have now.
Read more: The 6 must-have spaces in your next home.


Real-estate recovery in 2011? Not likely

Even if the housing market picks up steam this year, that will prompt the "closet" inventory to enter the market — pushing prices lower, says veteran real-estate writer Lew Sichelman. He talks with Amy Hoak about his real-estate outlook.
Watch video: Real-estate recovery in 2011? Not likely.


How a mortgage application hits your credit score

Your credit score will take a hit when you apply for a mortgage — but not for long.
Read more: How a mortgage application hits your credit score.


TAXES

File your tax return for free

There are a growing number of ways to get free help — either through online software or from a tax expert — to complete your tax return.
Read more: File your tax return for free.


RETIREMENT

Social Security: Maximize your benefit

Social Security do-overs are basically gone, but there are a number of ways to make sure your monthly benefit is as high as it can be, according to MarketWatch's Andrea Coombes.
Watch video: Social Security: Maximize your benefit.


SPENDING & SAVING

When new cars are cheaper than used ones

Looking for a car or truck? Conventional wisdom says that the smart move is to buy used. Purchasing a brand-new vehicle, it goes, is a big waste of money.
Read more: When new cars are cheaper than used ones.


Surprise: Banks ease card fees

Some prominent credit-card issuers, eager to keep customers happy, are beginning to pull back on fees.
Read more: Surprise: Banks ease card fees.


ECONOMY & POLITICS

Commentary: GE's Immelt joins Team Obama

Thoughtful reflection on the White House's announcement Friday that General Electric Co. (GE) boss Jeffrey Immelt is going to lead the President's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness is going to run the gamut. But the knee-jerk reaction is one of disbelief.
Read more: GE's Immelt joins Team Obama.


Obama continues business push with GE visit

President Barack Obama, set to visit the birthplace of blue-chip conglomerate General Electric, plans to name GE's top executive to head up a new White House council on jobs and economic competitiveness.
Read more: Obama continues business push with GE visit.


In charts: Building starts, BRIC GDPs and more

Weekly graphical representation of top indicators shows continued weakness in new-home construction but a pickup in existing-house sales, as well as that China is the top BRIC economy and that German growth is accelerating.
Read more: Building starts, BRIC GDPs and more.


CAREERS

Did Google just fix something that wasn't broken?

It's hard to tell right now how much change is represented in the move of Google Inc. (GOOG) Chief Executive Eric Schmidt to executive chairman and the elevation of co-founder Larry Page to the top post.
Read more: Did Google just fix something that wasn't broken?


Morgan Stanley increases staff, pay

Morgan Stanley (MS), the come-from-behind champion of 2010 league tables, was one of the few bulge-bracket banks to swell both ranks and pay last year.
Read more: Morgan Stanley increases staff, pay.


Fifth Third Bancorp hires, hikes pay

Fifth Third Bancorp (FITB), the Cincinnati-based lender, increased head count by 0.8% last year and handed out more compensation than the year before, fourth-quarter earnings show.
Read more: Fifth Third Bancorp hires, hikes pay.


INVESTING

‘Absolute-return' funds aren't for most investors

"Absolute-return" funds are one of the hottest and fastest-growing areas of the mutual-fund world. But just because something is easy to market to the public doesn't mean it's a good idea.
Read more: ‘Absolute-return' funds aren't for most investors.


S&P 500 and Dow: Tale of two markets

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) moved in the same direction 98.5% of the time in 2010. Yet the S&P rose 12.8% while the Dow advanced 11%. How did that happen?
Read more: A tale of two markets.


Six lessons from stock speculator Jesse Livermore

Almost anyone can learn the mechanics of stock trading. It's the psychological pitfalls that make trading one of the most challenging activities.
Read more: Six lessons from stock speculator Jesse Livermore.


Fund investors climb a wall of worry

It's good to see that the stock market's proverbial Wall of Worry is standing tall and solid once again.
Read more: Fund investors climb a wall of worry.


Emerging markets have had their day — for now

While investors suffered through a lost decade in most U.S. stocks, they found gold in emerging markets.
Read more: Emerging markets have had their day, for now.


A contrarian view of the euro's prospects

Concern about the fate of the euro is disrupting the markets yet again. But a veteran observer of the European economy is advising clients not to get carried away with forecasts of doom and gloom.
Read more: A contrarian view of the euro's prospects.


Japan, the first tiger, still has teeth

Investors shouldn't ignore Japan while it still holds a few good cards.
Read more: Japan, the first tiger, still has teeth.


INTERNATIONAL

German Ifo index continues record climb

Germany's closely watched Ifo business-confidence index continues its climb to record territory in January, fueled by growing optimism among manufacturers.
Read more: German Ifo index continues record climb.

Stocks Close Mixed As Traders Digest Corporate Earnings - U.S. Commentary | RTTNews Evening Market Wrap

Evening Market Wrap Fri Jan 21 2011

Commentary

Jan 21, 2011 Stocks Close Mixed As Traders Digest Corporate Earnings - U.S. Commentary After failing to sustain an initial upward move, stocks eventually turned mixed over the course of the trading day on Friday. The mixed performance by the markets came as traders digested the latest batch of corporate earnings news. Full Article

Corporate News

Jan 21, 2011 Bank Of America Posts $1.2 Bln Loss, Hurt By ChargeBank of America Corp. (BAC) reported Friday a wider year-over-year net loss for the fourth quarter, hurt by a hefty impairment charge. On an adjusted basis, the company turned to a profit on lower provision for credit losses and higher net interest income. Adjusted earnings per share, however, missed estimates, as revenues dropped 11 percent and disappointed the market. The company reported a net loss for the fourth quarter of $1.24 billion, sharply wider than $194 million in the comparable quarter a year ago. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 GE Profit SurgesDiversified conglomerate General Electric Co. (GE) on Friday reported a 52 percent surge in profit for the fourth quarter, reflecting higher revenues from its Technology Infrastructure and NBC Universal segments in addition to lower costs and expenses. Looking ahead, the company said it expects earnings growth will continue in 2011 and 2012. Shares of the company are up more than 3% in the pre-market trading. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 BB&T Q4 Profit Rises, Tops EstimateBB&T Corp. (BBT), a provider of banking and trust services, Friday reported higher fourth-quarter profit, reflecting a reduction in the provision for credit losses and better interest margins. Earnings per share rose 11 percent and came in above Wall Street analysts' forecast. Fourth-quarter consolidated net income available to common shareholders was $208 million, up from $185 million in the same period last year. On a per share basis, earnings rose to $0.30 from $0.27 in the prior-year quarter. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Schlumberger Profit Beats ExpectationsOilfield services provider Schlumberger Ltd. (SLB) reported Friday a sharp year-over-year increase in profit for the fourth quarter, reflecting strong contribution from the acquired Smith businesses and higher demand for its oilfield services. Both earnings per share and quarterly revenues topped analysts' expectations. Looking ahead, the company said recent robust demand increases as well as predictions of higher demand next year will make 2011 a stronger year for it. Full Article

Political News

Jan 21, 2011 House GOP Calls For Permanent Ban On Federal Abortion FundingAfter keeping their campaign promise to vote to repeal the health care reform law, House Republicans have turned their attention to the traditional conservative issue of abortion, introducing a bill to permanently prohibit taxpayer funding of abortion across all federal programs. Republicans said the "No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act," introduced by Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., would permanently end federal funding of abortion and codify the Hyde Amendment. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Gingrich Says Obama Serving Clinton's Third TermFormer House Speaker Newt Gingrich has weighed in on the Obama administration's apparent move to the political center following the midterm elections, suggesting that President Barack Obama's next two years in office will be equivalent to a third term for former President Bill Clinton. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Obama's Approval Rating Takes Hit In Second YearPresident Barack Obama's average approval rating during his second year in office took a hit due to economic worries. According to Gallup, Obama had an average approval rating of 46.7 percent in his second year, down 10.5 percentage points from his first year. Obama is in good company, however, as President Ronald Reagan also saw a significant drop in his approval rating during his second year. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Obama Names GE Chief To New Economic Board, Signals Emphasis On Job CreationPresident Barack Obama signaled Friday that his administration is seeking to shift its emphasis from warding off economic catastrophe to increasing the pace of recovery. Speaking at a General Electric (GE) facility in Schenectady, N.Y., Obama said that the next challenge is to harness the potential already available in American businesses and workers to bring the economy back. Full Article

NYT : Afternoon Business News.- You Think Houses Are a Slow Sell? Try Unloading a Yacht.



BUSINESS

You Think Houses Are a Slow Sell? Try Unloading a Yacht

By GERALDINE FABRIKANT
The market for yachts is still depressed long after the recession has ended, discouraging would-be buyers and leaving owners unable to sell.
Your Money

With Retirement Savings, It's All About the Homestretch

By TARA SIEGEL BERNARD
You can save all your life, but those last years before you retire will determine the result.
Off the Charts

China May Be Masking Its Purchase of U.S. Securities

By FLOYD NORRIS
China is a net seller of Treasury securities, according to government figures. That has raised speculation that it is channeling its purchases through British accounts.
DealBook

Bank of America Posts Loss

By NELSON D. SCHWARTZ
The quarterly loss underscored the lingering effects of the mortgage mess. Excluding one-time hits, the bank earned $756 million, compared with a loss of $194 million last year.

Union Membership in U.S. Fell Sharply in 2010

By STEVEN GREENHOUSE
The number of workers in unions fell by 612,000 last year to 14.7 million, a report said, with declines coming in both public and private sector unions.

GE lifts Dow, S&P 500 but S&P's 7-week streak ends | Financial And Forex Info News | Reuters Daily Investor Update

FINANCIAL & FOREX INFO NEWS


FROM: REUTERS - DAILY INVESTOR UPDATE


LATEST NEWS
GE lifts Dow, S&P 500 but S&P's 7-week streak ends
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Dow and S&P 500 rose on Friday as General Electric Co's earnings put a positive tone on the economic recovery, snapping a two-day losing skid for the benchmark index. | Full Article

Bank of America posts Q4 loss on mortgage problems
January 21, 2011 04:19 PM ET
CHARLOTTE, N.C./NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bank of America Corp, the largest U.S. bank, reported weaker-than-expected revenue and a second straight quarterly loss after its limping mortgage business triggered writedowns and legal settlements. | Full Article
Facebook raises $1.5 billion from investors
January 21, 2011 04:36 PM ET
SEATTLE (Reuters) - Facebook said on Friday it has raised $1.5 billion from investors, under terms which the online social network says gives it a value of about $50 billion. | Full Article
GE earnings climb on strengthening global economy
January 21, 2011 03:10 PM ET
BOSTON (Reuters) - General Electric Co posted a better-than-expected profit, helped by strong emerging-market demand for heavy equipment and setting the stage for what could be wave of strong manufacturing earnings reports. | Full Article
Google investors worry about future growth
January 21, 2011 03:39 PM ET
NEW YORK/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Google Inc shares shed earlier gains as confidence that CEO Larry Page would rejuvenate the No. 1 Internet search company wavered. | Full Article

NFA permanently bars Florida firm Oxford Trading Group, Inc.; sanctions its principal, APs | NFA NOTIFICATION : For Immediate Release

The GOP's rude awakening on health-care repeal | The Washington Post Afternoon Edition : Most Read Articles

Washington Post

1) Giffords leaves Tucson hospital for arduous rehabilitation at Houston facility

TUCSON --Less than two weeks after she was shot in the head, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords left an Arizona hospital Friday to begin treatment at a Houston rehabilitation facility.

2) The GOP's rude awakening on health-care repeal

Repeal only means they'll have to design something similar to Obamacare.

3) House GOP group proposes deep spending cuts over next decade

Congressional conservatives on Thursday demanded far more dramatic reductions in government spending than House GOP leaders have recently proposed, in the first sign of a fissure between old-guard Republicans and tea-party-backed newcomers.

4) Everything starts with repeal

The whole Obamacare bill was gamed repeal is crucial.

5) New GOP proposal targets federal workforce

A series of measures proposed Thursday by House conservatives to shrink the federal deficit included several that would fall heavily on the federal workforce.

6) Faster Forward: Verizon sues to stop net-neutrality rules it suggested

My first reaction to yesterday's news that Verizon is suing the Federal Communications Commission to overturn its pending, half-heared net-neutrality rules was one of a Verizon customer.

7) I'm declaring February a Palin-free month. Join me!

8) Tucson victim Barber: 'Almost right away, he shot me'

As prosecutors build their case against the man accused in the mass shooting that critically wounded an Arizona congresswoman this month, a key element will be the story of Ron Barber.

9) Baby Doc: Mystery return after French exile

PARIS -- Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier started out his French exile living large on the Riviera: He drove a Ferrari, went on couture shopping sprees and lived in a gated villa protected by guards with assault rifles.

10) Vultures are wintering locally, to the disgust of residents

Molly Pallavicini has seriously considered selling her house to get away from her new neighbors. "They're disgusting," she said. They carry on in public. They hiss at each other. They use her driveway as a toilet.

China Buys Gold And The World Follows | GATA - THE GATA DISPATCH

China buys gold and the world follows

Submitted by cpowell on 09:34AM ET Friday, January 21, 2011. Section: Daily Dispatches By Myra P. Saefong
MarketWatch.com
Friday, January 21, 2011
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/china-buys-gold-and-the-world-follows-2...
Gold prices have lost around $75 an ounce this year but analysts are unfazed by the drop, with many betting the slump in prices will soon be cut short as the Chinese New Year feeds an increase in global demand that's destined to last.
"We are entering a period of strong seasonal growth in gold demand and Chinese New Year is a big part of that," said Brien Lundin, editor of Gold Newsletter. "Physical demand has been supporting the gold prices on the downside even during the typical slack periods, and I expect that upcoming increase in demand will also support the price, but at higher levels."
The Chinese New Year, also known as Lunar New Year, begins on Feb. 3 this year and ends with the Lantern Festival 15 days later.
"Chinese gold and silver demand has been phenomenal ahead of the New Year holiday," said Adrian Ash, head of research at BullionVault.com, a leading online service for gold bullion trading and ownership, citing comments from dealers among others.
Shipments have been "heavy" and they began very early, in mid-December, he said.
"Chinese New Year is the time of year when the Chinese share gifts, usually money in little red envelopes," said Mark Leibovit, chief market strategist for VRTrader.com. "Perhaps the little red envelopes will be a bit heavier this year."
But the recent spike in China's demand for gold goes well beyond providing gifts to celebrate the new year.
"It's really simple," said Cary Pinkowski, chief executive officer of Astur. "China banned gold ownership for most of the 20th century and that's over. China has a savings rate of more than 30%" and "an official inflation rate of 10%."
On Thursday, data out of China showed that consumer inflation hit 4.6% year-on-year in December and GDP expanded by a faster-than-expected 9.8% year-on-year for the fourth quarter. The news sparked a global selloff in commodities and stocks on worries that the fast expansion would prompt policy makers to hike interest rates again. Read more on Chinese growth and inflation.
"The Chinese will buy more and more gold just as every other civilization has in inflationary times and with their high savings rates, they have the money to do it," Pinkowski said.
And buy they have.
Since 2005, the January through March period has seen China's private household gold demand average a rise of 22% from the previous nine months, according to a BullionVault analysis, based on GFMS data courtesy of the World Gold Council.
"Long term, that's meant Chinese households have put an ever-greater proportion of their fast-growing annual savings into gold," said Ash, with that portion growing from 0.8% of retained income in 2001 to a forecast of more than 1.7% in 2010.
The number of gold savings accounts, meanwhile, launched by the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd. only a year ago, has grown beyond 1 million without much public relations or marketing, "which is an extraordinary pace of demand growth," said Martin Hennecke, associate director at Tyche Group in Hong Kong.
China is not alone.
India continues to be the world's biggest gold buyer.
India's import figures for 2010 were sharply higher -- almost one-half above 2009's depressed level, according to Ash.
Gold-buying demand is "traditionally strong" from September through November in India, a combination of the five-day Diwali festival of lights that began on Nov. 5 and the post-harvest and wedding seasons. Gold prices during Diwali jumped 10%, on average, from the previous three months, Ash said.
"China is in the process of overtaking India as the biggest national buyer of gold," said Julian Phillips, an editor at GoldForecaster.com. "At a minimum, the two countries take half the newly-mined gold and the figure is rising."
Despite all those supports, gold prices have dropped over 5% from the end of last year. Gold futures sank almost $24 on Thursday alone to finish at a two-month low of $1,346.50 an ounce. Read about gold’s drop on Thursday.
Gold seems to be taking its cues from the dollar, said Peter Grant, senior metals analyst at USAGOLD-Centennial Precious Metals Inc. But he added: "The inverse correlation has been muted somewhat by the perception that sovereign debt risks in Europe have been relieved to some degree."
The "correction could certainly extend purely on technicals," he said, but "I don't see a compelling fundamental reason to be short gold."
Chintan Karnani, chief analyst at Insignia Consultants in New Delhi, said he's "skeptical" about gold prices and expects them to fall to $1,344 or below before the Chinese New Year.
"My experience is that gold falls whenever physical demand is high and it rises whenever investment demand rises," he said, pointing out that gold investment demand is not that high at this time.
Among the factors that could still cause a crash in gold prices is "potential liquidation tied to solvency concerns of some American and European financial institutions," Paul Mladjenovic, market analyst at ProsperityNetwork.net, said. "This would be fallout from issues tied to Europe's debt crisis as well as the municipal debt crisis in America," he said.
Karnani believes that inflation in food and energy prices is actually another potential worry for the gold market. "If food price inflation continues to rise at the current pace, then gold prices will initially rise but towards the end of 2011 [they] will crash."
"Global growth will be derailed," gold and equities will "come down crashing," and India and China will also be affected, he said. After all, "common man does not eat gold. He eats food."
But so far this year, gold's recent weakness pales in comparison to its more than $1,000-per-ounce jump over the course of the last 10 years.
"Gold has been in a multi-year bull market," said Chris Mayer, a managing editor for Agora Financial and contributor to the Daily Reckoning. "When people are worried, they are going to look at that performance and it is going to make them feel even more comfortable about owning some."
Americans would be amazed at the crowds of ordinary people in China buying gold coins, figurines and bars, "hand over fist," he said about a visit to a gold market last year in Beijing.
But don't expect spectacular gains in gold all at once this year.
Although "the pace of rise of gold will be slow in 2011 as compared to 2010, 15% to 20% annualized return in 2011 can be achieved," so if you are invested in gold, then hold on to it, Karnani said.
If you have not yet invested in gold and want to invest, "watch gold for a fortnight and invest around $1,335 in small amounts and aggressively below $1,275 and below," he said.
GoldForecaster.com's Phillips advises investors to "stay calm and keep their seatbelts on." He said $2,000 gold is possible this year.
And Ed Bugos, director of mining finance at Strategic Metals Research & Capital, said, "Don't take your eye off the ball. It's a bull market."
That bull market doesn't need new fears, or events, or news to feed off, he said.
"The fundamental premise is the falling value of the paper world around it," he said. "Crises and other problems brought about by the inflationary policies that debase money in the name of growth" are why investors flock to gold.

* * *

Join GATA here:
Vancouver Resource Investment Conference
Vancouver Convention Centre West
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Sunday-Monday, January 23-24, 2011

http://cambridgehouse.com/conference-details/vancouver-resource-investme...

Stocks Headed For Solid Open As Traders Look To Earnings - U.S. Commentary | RTTNews Morning Market Briefing

Morning Market Briefing Fri Jan 21 09:11 2011

Commentary

Jan 21, 2011 Stocks Headed For Solid Open As Traders Look To Earnings - U.S. Commentary Stocks are poised to open Friday's session on the upside by moderate margins, as the markets are looking to a slew of corporate earnings reports, including better than expected results from General Electric (GE) and Google (GOOG). The major index futures are all in positive territory, with the Dow futures up by 43 points. Full Article

Economic News

Jan 21, 2011 Spain Mulls Savings Bank Bailout Spain is considering a bailout for the country's debt-laden savings banks in order to avoid an international involvement. The country's savings banks, known as cajas, face heavy losses after the construction bubble busted during the global financial crisis. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 New Zealand Retail Sales Bounce BackRetail sales in New Zealand recovered in November boosted by sales of vehicles and fuel, figures showed on Friday. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 German Ifo Business Confidence At New Record High German business confidence hit a new high in January, boosted by an increasingly optimistic manufacturing and construction sectors. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Snow Dampens UK Retail Sales In December British high street sales declined more than expected in December as heavy snowfall and higher prices pulled down clothing and food sales. Full Article

Earnings News

Jan 21, 2011 Schlumberger Q4 Profit UpOilfield services provider Schlumberger Ltd. (SLB) reported Friday an increased fourth-quarter profit, driven by a 16% increase in oilfield services revenue. Income from continuing operations went up 42%, and, along with revenues, topped estimates. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 BB&T Q4 Profit Up 12%Financial services holding company, BB&T Corp. (BBT) Friday said its fourth-quarter profit grew 12.4% on the back of a higher net interest income and much lower provisions for credit losses. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 GE Q4 Profit SoarsGeneral Electric (GE) Friday announced a 52% increase in income attributable to common shareowners, with strong performances by GE Capital and NBC Universal. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 SunTrust Banks Reports Q4 ProfitBanking company, SunTrust Banks Inc. (STI) reported Friday a return to profit in the fourth-quarter, reflecting lower net charge-offs and lower provisions for credit losses. Net interest income went up 7%. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Flextronics Q3 Results beat Estimates; Issues Q4 GuidanceElectronics firm Flextronics International Ltd. (FLEX) Thursday announced a significant increase in third-quarter profit, with sales increasing 19% on higher demand for its supply chain services. Adjusted earnings as well as revenues topped analysts' estimates. The company also issued fourth-quarter guidance, with earnings expected to match or beat the market consensus. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Intuitive Surgical Q4 Profit SoarsIntuitive Surgical Inc. (ISRG), a maker of surgical robotic technologies, said Thursday fourth-quarter profit surged, as sales were boosted by a 35% increase in growth of their da Vinci surgical procedure and greater adoption of its robotic procedure. Both earnings and revenues exceeded expectations. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Google Q4 Profit Tops Estimates; co-founder Larry Page to become new CEOGoogle Inc. (GOOG) Thursday announced higher fourth-quarter profit, with revenues rising 26%. Revenues and adjusted earnings beat analysts' estimates. The company named co-founder Larry Page as the new chief executive officer, replacing Eric Schmidt, who will continue as executive chairman. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Capital One Q4 Profit Surges 85%Capital One Financial Corp. (COF), a financial holding company, reported Thursday an 85% surge in fourth-quarter earnings, which beat analysts' estimates, thanks to improved charge-offs and stabilizing loan volumes. Quarterly net interest income also rose substantially. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 International Game Tech Q1 Profit Inches UpGaming systems developer International Game Technology (IGT) Thursday said first-quarter profit was up marginally, with the success of cost cutting and operational improvement measures. Adjusted earnings managed to beat analysts' estimates, while revenues fell 10% and missed estimates. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 AMD Q4 Profit PlummetsSemiconductor company Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) announced Thursday a sharp decline in fourth-quarter profit. Excluding special items, earnings rose year-over-year and topped the Street view. Revenues remained flat, yet beat estimates. Looking ahead, AMD said it expects first-quarter 2011 revenues to be flat to slightly down sequentially. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Con Edison Q4 Profit Up, but misses ViewUtility company Consolidated Edison, Inc. (ED) reported Thursday a higher fourth-quarter net profit owing to lower operating costs which offset a decline in revenues. The growth in adjusted earnings, which excludes net mark-to-market effects, was however marginal. Adjusted earnings and revenues missed market consensus. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Wipro Q3 Profit Up 10%Wipro Limited (WIT), an India-based IT solutions provider, Thursday announced a 10% rise in third-quarter profit, thanks to a 19% increase in IT service revenues and a 21% increase in lighting and consumer care revenues. In dollar terms, earnings per share met analysts' expectations, while quarterly revenues topped their estimate. The company expects IT service revenues to grow 3% to 5 % sequentially in the current quarter which ends March 31. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Bank of America Posts $1.2 bln Q4 Loss on Impairment ChargeBank of America Corp. (BAC) posted a $1.2 billion fourth-quarter loss on a hefty impairment charge in the home loans and insurance segment. Excluding such one-time gains and charges, the company turned to a profit due to continually decreasing credit costs. Revenues, net of interest expense, declined 11% and disappointed the market. Full Article
Jan 21, 2011 Watson Pharma Issues 2011 GuidanceWatson Pharmaceuticals Inc. (WPI) Friday issued a forecast for 2011, expecting adjusted cash earnings per share in the range of $3.85 - $4.15. Revenues are expected to beat analysts' estimates. The company also estimated an earnings growth of 20-25% in 2012 and 15-20% in 2013. Full Article

Broker Ratings Changes

Jan 21, 2011 FBR Capital Markets Upgrades HEICO Corp. (HEI) To Outperform From Market Perform With $60 Price Target

Todays WS Events

Jan 21, 2011 Watson Pharmaceuticals Investor Day At 8:30 AM ET Watson Pharmaceuticals (WPI) will provide an update of its business & outlook for 2011 at an Investor Day in New York City. The event is scheduled to begin at 8:30 AM ET on January 21, 2011. To access the live webcast, log on at www.watson.com
Jan 21, 2011 Citigroup To Present Fourth Quarter 2010 Investor Review; Webcast At 10:00 AM ET Citigroup Inc. (C) will will conduct a fourth quarter 2010 Fixed Income Investor Review. The event is schedule to begin at 10:00 AM ET, January 21, 2011. To access the webcast, log on to www.citigroup.com/citi/fin To participate in the call, dial (800) 309-5794 (US) or (706) 902-3256 (International) with conference code: 30191954.
Jan 21, 2011 SunTrust Banks Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 8:00 AM ET SunTrust Banks, Inc. (STI) will host a conference call at 8:00 AM ET, January 21, 2011, to discuss its Q4 10 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at www.suntrust.com/investorrelations To hear the live call, dial 1-888-972-7805 (US) or 1-517-308-9091 (International) with passcode 4Q10. A replay of the call can be heard by dialing 1-800-294-3092 (US) or 1-402-220-9770 (International).
Jan 21, 2011 Bank Of America Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 8:30 AM ET Bank of America Corp. (BAC) will host a conference call at 8:30 AM ET, January 21, 2010, to discuss its Q4 10 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at http://investor.bankofamerica.com
Jan 21, 2011 General Electric Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 8:30 AM ET General Electric Co (GE) will host a conference call at 8:30 AM ET, January 21, 2011, to discuss its Q4 10 earnings result. To access the live webcast, log on to www-waa-akam.thomson-webcast.net/us/dispatching/GEQ420110121

Stocks To Watch

Jan 21, 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

BofA posts loss on writedown | Financial & Forex Info News | Reuters - Before The Bell

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FROM: REUTERS - BEFORE THE BELL

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Futures higher, helped by GE results
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stock index futures rose on Friday after two days of declines as strong earnings from General Electric and Google boosted investor optimism. | Full Article

BofA posts loss on writedown
January 21, 2011 07:50 AM ET
CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Reuters) - Bank of America Corp, the largest U.S. bank by assets, reported a second straight quarterly loss, driven by writedowns in the value of its mortgage business. | Full Article
GE profit tops Wall St view
January 21, 2011 07:53 AM ET
BOSTON (Reuters) - General Electric Co reported better-than-expected earnings, helped by the recovery of its finance arm and a rise in revenue at its industrial units, including a sharp pickup in sales of locomotives. | Full Article
Google co-founder Page takes over, targets Facebook
January 21, 2011 06:24 AM ET
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Google Inc co-founder Larry Page will take over as CEO from Eric Schmidt, a surprise move to make the company more nimble at a time when competition heats up with fast-growing rivals like Facebook. | Full Article
Verizon sees $600 million accounting change charge
January 21, 2011 07:41 AM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Verizon Communications plans to report a $600 million charge for the full year 2010 due to a change in the way it accounts for retirement benefits, following the lead of rival AT&T Inc . | Full Article