Wall Street Breakfast: Must-Know News

by: Wall Street Breakfast
Wall Street Breakfast
Seeking Alpha's flagship daily business news summary, gives you a rapid overview of the day's key financial news. It is published before 7:00 AM ET every market day and delivered to over 900,000 email subscribers.

Top Stories
AT&T reportedly thwarted in Telefonica bid. AT&T (NYSE:T) has reportedly been thwarted in a €70B bid to acquire Telefonica (NYSE:TEF) by Spain's government, which has the power to stop the sale of any company that is deemed strategic. The U.S. carrier told state representatives that it would take on the Spanish operator's €52B of debt as part of any transaction. Telefonica said it hasn't "received any approach or...indication of interest," from AT&T. The Spanish company's shares were +3.1% at midday in Madrid.

Kabel Deutschland sees Vodafone deal at €11B. Kabel Deutschland (OTCPK:KBDHY) reportedly wants Vodafone (NASDAQ:VOD) to pay over €8B in cash to acquire the German cable operator and assume nearly €3B in debt. The cash component would represent a premium of around 10% on Kabel's Friday close in Frankfurt and and an 11%+ premium on the €7.2B that Vodafone has already reportedly offered.

Boeing, Airbus seal major orders at Paris Air Show. Boeing (NYSE:BA) and Airbus (OTCPK:EADSF) have started to rack up the orders at the Paris Air Show, which is taking place this week. GE Capital Aviation Services, GE's (NYSE:GE) aircraft leasing arm, has committed to purchasing 10 Boeing (BA) 787-10X aircraft in a deal valued at $2.9B at list prices, pending the launch of this larger version of the Dreamliner. German aircraft leasing company Doric Asset Finance intends to buy 20 Airbus A380 jets in a transaction worth $8B.

Top Stock News
Royalty Pharma's bid for Elan fails. Elan (NYSE:ELN) soared 8.3% premarket after investors approved a $200M share repurchase plan, meaning Royalty Pharma's bid for the company has now lapsed, freeing Elan to seek other buyers. However, investors rejected a deal with Theravance (THRX) and the acquisition of AOP Orphan Pharmaceuticals.

France Telecom CEO receives government support. France Telecom (FTE) CEO Stephane Richard looks set to keep his job for the time being after the French government instructed its three representatives on the carrier's board to vote to keep Richard in place at a crucial directors' meeting today. The meeting comes after Richard was placed under formal investigation as part of a probe into a €285M government arbitration payout to a businessman in 2008. France Telecom's shares were +3.4% premarket.

Exclusive: Google Glass has Himax inside. Integrated circuit expert and SA contributor Karl Guttag has conclusive proof that Himax (NASDAQ:HIMX) microdisplays are being used in Google Glass (NASDAQ:GOOG). Shares of Himax (HIMX) are down more than 28% since May 31 after Google Glass teardowns revealed no Himax logo.

Starboard urges Smithfield to break up. Activist investor Starboard Value has reportedly taken a 5.7% stake in Smithfield (NYSE:SFD) and is urging the company to split up into three rather than complete its $4.7B acquisition by China's Shuanghui. Starboard reckons Smithfield could be worth $44-55 if it were to break up into separate U.S. pork production, hog farming and international-sales companies, well above Shuanghui's offer of $34 a share. Smithfield's shares were +2.1% at $32.80 premarket.

ABB looks inside for new CEO. ABB (NYSE:ABB) has appointed Ulrich Spiesshofer, the head of its automation and motion division, as its new CEO following the unexpected resignation of Joe Hogan in May for personal reasons. "Ulrich has been a key force in shaping and implementing ABB's strategy," said company Chairman Hubertus von Grunberg. Spiesshofer will take over at ABB, the world's largest supplier of industrial motors, on September 15.

"Man of Steel" enjoys super opening weekend. Time Warner's (NYSE:TWX) "Man of Steel" generated almost $200M in worldwide ticket sales on its debut weekend, including $125.1M in the U.S. and Canada. Given that the Superman reboot has also taken in $170M from promotional partners, the film has nearly covered its $375M production and marketing costs. The success of the film so far has strengthened speculation about sequels and a "Justice League" flick.

Weyerhaeuser names new CEO. It was a busy Sunday of announcements for Weyerhaeuser (NYSE:WY), which appointed Doyle Simons, the former head of Temple-Inland, to replace retiring CEO Dan Fulton. Weyerhaeuser is also acquiring 645,000 acres of high-quality timberlands in Washington and Oregon from Brookfield Asset Management (NYSE:BAM) for $2.65B. In addition, Weyerhaeuser will explore "strategic alternatives" for WRECO, its homebuilding and real-estate development business, including a merger, sale, or spin-off.

Top Economic & Other News
India maintains benchmark rate at 7.25%. As expected, the Reserve Bank of India has kept its benchmark interest rate at 7.25% after cutting it at three previous policy meetings. The RBI warned of inflation risks due to a weakening rupee in its review. "The RBI was slightly hawkish but with the rupee under pressure to weaken, the tone was appropriate," said forex strategist Suresh Kumar Ramanathan.

EU and U.S. could launch trade talks at G8. The EU and U.S. could launch trade talks at the G8 summit, which starts today, after EU ministers agreed on Friday to provide a mandate for negotiations. They acquiesced to France's demand to leave the subsidies for its audiovisual industries off the table despite fears that the U.S. will use the situation to exclude more economically important sectors such as government procurement.

Iranian "moderate" wins presidential election. Hassan Rohani, who's seen as a bit of a centrist, won Iran's presidential election on Friday. Oil futures were +0.65% at the time of writing, but Rohani's victory could put downward pressure on prices in the longer term given that he has pledged to promote a foreign policy based on "constructive interaction with the world." The question is whether Iran will bow to international demands over the country's atomic program, which would then lead to the end of the sanctions that have caused its oil production to plummet.

Alpha-Rich Stock Movers and Great Calls
1) EZChip (EZCH) is 24% below where it was when Value Bulldog pointed out the disconnect in its valuation in December.

Alpha-Rich Stocks To Watch
1) IDT (NYSE:IDT). Carbondale Capital's sum-of-the-parts analysis of IDT's disparate segments shows significant undervaluation. Carbondale reckons IDT has a 70% upside.
2) Rentrak (NASDAQ:RENT). Money Investor shows why the small-cap data company's growth potential should have investors tuning in to 75% upside.

Alpha-Rich articles are the best long and short ideas on Seeking Alpha. SA Pro subscribers receive early access to these Alpha-Rich articles, which often move markets. For more information about SA Pro and becoming a subscriber, click here.

Today's Markets:
In Asia, Japan +2.7% to 13033. Hong Kong +1.2% to 21226. China -0.3% to 2156. India +0.8% to 19326.
In Europe, at midday, London +1%. Paris +1.8%. Frankfurt +1.5%.
Futures at 7:00: Dow +0.8%. S&P +0.9%. Nasdaq +1%. Crude +0.65% to $98.49. Gold -0.1% to $1386.20.

Today's economic calendar:
8:30 Empire State Mfg Survey
10:00 NAHB Housing Market Index

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