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  • Nokia nabs new CEO, from Microsoft. Nokia (NYSE:NOK) is surging in Europe this morning following the announcement that a new CEO has been named and will take charge effective Sept. 21. The new CEO will be Canada-born Stephen Elop, currently the head of Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) business division. Rumors of the impending departure of current CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo have been circulating since July. Analysts have mixed feelings about the choice of Elop, welcoming his software background while noting that Microsoft has its own problems in the mobile sphere. Investors are less picky, pushing Nokia stock +5% in early Europe trading.
  • Hewlett-Packard Russia bribe probe widens. Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) disclosed that a probe by U.S. authorities of possible bribes the company paid in Russia is now wider than previously reported. The disclosure, in an SEC filing, pertains to a long-running German investigation of allegations that H-P, through a German subsidiary, paid bribes in Russia to secure a contract valued at €35M, or about $44.5M; The disclosure itself is a sign the investigation has entered a new phase.
  • Apple eases apps. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will allow app developers for its iOS operating system for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad to use any code-authoring tools they prefer, rather than restricting them to Apple’s own tools, to write programs. Apple was feeling pressure from app developers who had to spend time and money to build separate versions of apps to work on both iOS and Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android smartphone platform. Adobe (NASDAQ:ADBE) shares surged more than 12% Thursday, as Apple's new rules suggest that Adobe’s Flash and related tools may become viable for iOS.
  • Steelworkers file complaint against China. The U.S. Steelworkers union formally requested a U.S. trade investigation into China's policies to support its green tech sector, in a case that could end up before the World Trade Organization. The petition accuses China's government of providing hundreds of billions of dollars in subsidies and other means of support to provide an unfair advantage to local firms. China’s manufacture of solar panels, wind power turbines and other clean energy products has turned the nation into the global leader in those markets.

Earnings: Thursday After Close

  • National Semiconductor (NSM): FQ1 EPS of $0.36 beats by $0.02. Revenue of $412M (+31%) vs. $415M. Shares -5.7% AH. (PR, earnings call transcript)

Today's Markets

  • In Asia, Japan +1.6%. Hong Kong +0.4%. China +0.3%. India closed.
  • In Europe, at midday, London -0.1%. Paris -0.3%. Frankfurt -0.4%.
  • Futures: S&P +0.3%. Euro +0.3% vs. dollar. Crude +2.24% to $75.91. Gold +0.04% to $1251.40.

Friday's Economic Calendar

Seeking Alpha's Market Currents team contributed to this post.


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