The most likely scenario is that the markets will begin to rise from here -- and that bounce is just beginning to take hold.
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These utilities are attractive takeover targets. Plus, each is worth owning on its own merits.
My No. 1 rule is to never buy a takeover target you don't want to own if there isn't a deal. The six companies reviewed below meet this criterion.
All six are cheap and small enough for giants to swallow, their balance sheets are solid, dividends are safe and management is investing in long-term growth. Any serious offer will have to be compelling.
Centerbridge Partners will buy the restaurant chain for $1.1 billion.
P.F. Chang's China Bistro (PFCB), the popular Asian-themed restaurant chain adorned with replica murals of 12th century China and sculptures that imitate the nation's Forbidden City, has agreed to sell itself to Centerbridge Partners in a private equity buyout valued at $1.1 billion, or $51.50 a share in cash.
The deal will net P.F. Chang's a near 30% premium to its share price at Monday's close, representing the culmination of a share recovery in the restaurant chain's stock after recent M&A speculation. Shares are now up 66% year-to-date.
Shares of the world's largest fast-food company defy worries over change in the executive suite.
The stock's advance over the past decade has been impressive, rocketing from $15 a share way back in 2002 to a high of $101 last year. The bulls predict the uptrend will continue, forecasting a leap to as high as $115 this year, in spite of macro headwinds.
Costco is downgraded to 'hold,' and Vantiv is initiated at several firms.
Tuesday's noteworthy upgrades include:
The soaring stock isn't as good a deal as it was, but it's good enough if you're not distracted by the GDP.
By Igor Greenwald, MoneyShow.com
GDP, SchmeeDP. Investors had a cursory glance at the U.S. economy's mildly disappointing 2.2% growth rate in the first quarter, then hurried on to more pressing business. That would be the business of deciding how much to pay up for earnings that have broadly exceeded expectations.
Three-quarters of the S&P 500 companies reporting so far have posted positive surprises, and more impressively still they were, as of last week, on pace for year-over-year earnings growth just shy of 10%, well ahead of the 2% consensus forecast.
In the 2 years since the flash crash, not much has changed for the robots, despite calls for increased regulation.
By Sarah Anderson, guest columnist
On May 6, it will be two years since high-frequency traders played a role in the flash crash that sent the Dow Jones industrials ($INDU) into a free fall. Since then, the SEC has done little beyond introducing circuit breakers on daily price gyrations. Regulators have not set limits on the number of orders firms can make or cancel each second and still lack the ability to track such trading in real time.
Recent research has fueled concerns that the robots may be not only manipulating markets but could very well go haywire and drag us through another crash.
The solar sector is still collapsing, but its fortunes will change as the world continues to use more energy.
Cloud services and online gambling could take the social gaming site to the next level.
Its monthly active user base expanded to 292 million, up 24% year over year, after seeing a decline in the second half of 2011.
E&P needs companies like CGG-VERITAS to tap unconventional reserves.
By Aaron Levitt
At this point, it's no secret that global energy demand is rising at exponential rates. Overall, the Energy Information Administration's latest global forecast predicts that the world's energy use will jump nearly 53% by 2035 as strong demand from emerging markets such as India and China continues to rise.
And with traditional reserves quickly dwindling, energy and production companies have literally gone to the ends of the earth to find new ways to meet that demand. These unconventional sources are becoming the norm when it comes to production and reserves. Tools such as hydraulic fracturing and horizontal deep-sea drilling rigs are now standard equipment, and regions such as Africa's fertile oceans and America's shale formations are dotted with activity.
The drug maker tops first-quarter profit estimates, but sales fall. The satellite radio company beats revenue expectations on strong subscriber growth.
By Alexandra Zendrian
Updated at 9:30 a.m. ET
Drug maker and Dow component Pfizer (PFE) reported first-quarter earnings excluding items of 58 cents a share, just beating analysts' estimates of 56 cents a share. Quarterly revenue was $15.4 billion, down from $16.5 billion a year ago and slightly below estimates. The company said U.S. sales fell 15% as its cholesterol drug Lipitor faced generic competition. The pharmaceutical giant is fresh off last week's agreement to sell its nutrition business to Nestlé for $11.85 billion. Shares of Pfizer ticked down 15 cents, or 0.66%, in premarket trading Tuesday to $22.75.
Sirius XM Radio (SIRI) beat Wall Street's revenue estimate in the first quarter, boosted by strong subscriber growth. The satellite radio giant brought in revenue of $805 million, up from $724 million in the prior year's quarter, and above analysts' estimates of $803.83. Excluding items, Sirius earned 2 cents a share, compared to a penny a share in the same period last year, and in line with the estimates of analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters. Sirius shares inched up 3 cents, or 1.55%, in premarket trading Tuesday to $2.29.
Two directors are leaving the daily-deals company. On the bright side, they're being replaced by board members with significant accounting experience.
Issues continue to mount for Groupon (GRPN), the purveyor of daily Internet deals. Just a month after revising its fourth-quarter loss to $64.9 million from $42.3 million, Groupon is once again causing consternation for investors as two board members depart.
Shares of Groupon plunged almost 11% Monday on above-average volume, with losses accelerating late in the session following a report by AllThingsD that said Starbucks (SBUX) CEO Howard Schultz and Accel Partners' Kevin Efrusy will voluntarily leave the Groupon board.
The company shoots down market speculation that it would buy the energy-drink powerhouse.
Coke sent out a pretty definitive denial late Monday. "At this time, we are not in discussions to acquire the Monster Beverage Corporation," the company said in a statement. "We continue to review the best ways to maximize the value of our relationship."
That statement effectively erased all the gains Monster shares made Monday after The Wall Street Journal reported that Coke was in talks to buy Monster.
Novo Nordisk commands a high price on the market -- and finds itself up against high expectations as well.
The maker of performance apparel knows what it takes to succeed.
One in a special Top Stocks series on buying stocks for newborns.
If you could buy your newborn a stock like Nike (NKE), which in its first decade of trading returned nearly 600% and by today -- more than three decades later -- has returned nearly 15,500%, wouldn't you?
Under Armour (UA), which has a lot in common with Nike in its early days, also has the potential to be a stellar long-term performer.
Pizza for breakfast and red meat throughout the rest of the day? This is not a healthy diet.
Bloomberg set out to discover what Wall Street traders eat, and the answer is not pretty.
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Serious issues like drought and the deterioration of the developed world spell opportunity for this industry leader.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market ended the holiday-shortened week on a mixed note as the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 0.1%, while the S&P 500 added 0.1% with seven sectors posting gains.
Equity indices faced an uphill climb from the opening bell after disappointing quarterly results from Google (GOOG 536.10, -20.44) and IBM (IBM 190.04, -6.36) weighed on the early sentiment. Google reported earnings $0.15 below the Capital IQ consensus estimate on revenue of $15.42 ... More
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