Wall Street Breakfast: Must-Know News

by: Joseph McCafferty
Joseph McCafferty
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.

  • H-P and Hurd settle, paving the way for the ousted CEO’s move to Oracle. It looks like the battle between Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) and its ousted CEO Mark Hurd is coming to an end. The two sides said in a joint statement yesterday that Hurd would agree to protect H-P’s confidentiality while fulfilling his duties at Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL). Hurd also agreed to make a change to his severance package, forfeiting about 345,000 in restricted stock units worth an estimated $13M.
  • It’s official, recession ended in June 2009. The National Bureau of Economic Research, the official arbiter of when recessions begin and end, determined that what is now called The Great Recession ended in June 2009. Having begun in December 2007, it is the longest downturn since World War II. The decision was made by the Business Cycle Dating Committee of the NBER. The committee also decided that any further downturn of the economy would be considered a new recession, rather than a continuation of the recession that began in December 2007.
  • Deutsche Bank eyes $13B share offering. Deutsche Bank (NYSE:DB) is expected to raise as much as $13B in Europe’s biggest rights offer this year. Germany’s biggest bank plans to sell more than 308M new shares in Germany and the U.S., priced at a 30% discount to yesterday’s closing price. Shareholders will be able to buy one new share for every two that they own. The bank will use the proceeds to fund a takeover of Postbank (OTC:DEUPF) and to increase reserves.
  • Capital IQ to buy rival TheMarkets.com. Capital IQ, a unit of Standard and Poor’s, is putting together a deal to buy TheMarkets.com, a joint venture of several Wall Street banks including Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) and JP Morgan Chase (NYSE:JPM), for $300M. TheMarkets.com was formed in 2000 as a way to provide banks’ sell-side research to institutional investors.
  • Microsoft bets on Zune in Europe. Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is rolling out new software that will expand its Zune music and movie download service to Europe. It is hoping that Zune will catch on with users of its Xbox gaming system and its forthcoming smartphone operating system, Windows Phone 7, to help it compete with Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iTunes service.
  • Nokia delays delivery of N8 smartphone… again. Mobile equipment maker Nokia (NYSE:NOK) announced that it would delay the delivery of its much anticipated smartphone N8. The Finnish company said it would hold off on delivering pre-orders for a few weeks to do some final adjustments. It is just the latest snafu in the roll-out of the phone, which it hopes can compete with offerings from Apple (OTC:APPL) and others that are based on Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android operating system, including those from Motorola (MOT). Last week’s announcement of the new phone was overshadowed by a shakeup in the company’s top ranks.
  • UniCredit chief loses battle, likely to step down Alessandro Profumo is expected to step down as CEO of UniCredit (OTCPK:UNCFF), Italy’s largest bank, after losing the support of some key investors. The bank is likely to appoint chairman Dieter Rampl to run the bank on an interim basis. A group of shareholders accused Profumo of not listening to their concerns. Shares of the bank were down as much as 4% in trading in Milan.
  • Toyota settlement expected to be sealed. A federal judge said that he is inclined to keep the settlement confidential between Toyota (NYSE:TM) and the relatives of four people killed when a driver was unable to stop a Lexus. A sealed suit could hurt the chances of hundreds of plaintiffs who are pursuing a class-action against Toyota to settle their case. In separate news, Chinese authorities are pursuing a bribery charge against Toyota, alleging that the automaker’s finance arm paid bribes to encourage dealers to push loans from Toyota on customers.
  • Imax goes big into China. Theater operator Imax (NYSE:IMAX) signed a deal with a subsidiary of South Korea’s CJ CGV Co. to have 15 Imax systems installed in China. While terms were not disclosed, Imax said in a statement that it would trade lower up-front fees for a larger share of the box office generated by the theaters. CJ CGV already operates five Imax theaters in South Korea.
  • Judge orders Kerr-McGee to pay $23M in fines. A federal judge ordered Kerr-McGee Oil and Gas (KMG RETIRED) to pay $23M in fines stemming from false royalty claims it submitted to the federal government. The fine includes $5.7M in payments to an auditor who uncovered the fraud, as part of the federal whistleblower program. Kerr-McGee is weighing an appeal of the decision.

Today's Markets

  • In Asia, Japan -0.25% to 9602. Hong Kong +0.11% to 22003. China +0.11% to 2592. India +0.48% to 20002.
  • In Europe, at midday, London +0.30%. Paris +0.45%. Frankfurt +0.39%.
  • Futures: Dow -0.09%. S&P -0.07%. Nasdaq +0.05%. Crude -0.85% to $74.22. Gold +0.22% to $1283.60.

Tuesday's Economic Calendar

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

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