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  • Sasol buys shale stake from Talisman. Sasol (NYSE:SSL) will pay C$1.05B ($1.04B) for a 50% stake in Talisman Energy's (NYSE:TLM) Farrell Creek shale gas assets. Sasol said the quality and size of the field make it a 'highly attractive asset.' The two companies also agreed to conduct a joint feasibility study into the economic viability of a gas-to-liquid facility in western Canada and to collaborate on other 'gas opportunities.'
  • Perpetual calls off KKR talks. Australian wealth management fund Perpetual called off talks to potentially be acquired by KKR (NYSE:KKR), saying the $1.7B bid undervalues the company. Investors were clearly disappointed, and sent shares of Perpetual down 14.8% in Australian trading to A$31.54, significantly below KKR's indicative bid of A$38-40 per share, though analysts say another suitor is likely to emerge. KKR is expected to remain in the market for other Australian wealth management assets, as consolidation continues in the world's fourth-largest wealth management industry.
  • Raytheon to buy Applied Signal Technology. Raytheon (NYSE:RTN) announced it will buy Applied Signal Technology (APSG) for $38/share, or approximately $490M, net of cash acquired. The deal marks an 8.5% premium over APSG's closing price on Friday. Raytheon doesn't expect the transaction to have a material effect on its earnings. Subject to regulatory approval, the deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2011.
  • Ernst & Young to face fraud charges. Major accounting firm Ernst & Young is reportedly set to face civil fraud charges for its alleged role in the collapse of Lehman Brothers (OTC:LEHMQ). Sources said New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo is close to filing the charges, which accuse Ernst & Young of idly standing by while Lehman misled investors about its financial health. It would mark the first time a major accounting firm was held responsible for its role during the financial crisis.
  • Ingenico rejects Danaher bid. French payment systems group Ingenico rejected a €1.4B ($1.8B) takeover bid by U.S.-based Danaher (NYSE:DHR), saying Danaher "didn't present an offer that could be accepted by the board." According to French business daily Les Echos, Ingenico's largest shareholders, including French defense electronics group Safran and the French state, consider Ingenico's expertise to be strategic and therefore the firm shouldn't be sold to a foreign company.
  • Genzyme to push Campath valuation. At an investor meeting today, Genzyme (GENZ) will try to convince shareholders that its Campath drug for multiple sclerosis is worth more than Sanofi-Aventis' (NYSE:SNY) estimates. Genzyme, which is fighting off an $18.5B hostile bid from Sanofi, believes Campath's annual sales could peak at $3.5B, while Sanofi forecasts a more modest $700M. The discrepancy is central to Genzyme's argument that it's worth more than Sanofi's $69/share offer.
  • Sony to miss TV target. Sony (NYSE:SNE) will probably miss its target of raising LCD TV unit sales by 60% this fiscal year, said Executive Deputy President Hiroshi Yoshioka. Sony had been hoping that the introduction of 3-D and Internet-capable television models would lift sales in its money-losing TV division to 25M units this fiscal year, but Yoshioka said the division will likely remain unprofitable this year and wouldn't produce substantial profits next year. In Tokyo trading, Sony closed -1.15%.
  • Friday's failures. Regulators closed six banks on Friday, bringing this year's failures to 157 so far. The closures in Georgia (I, II, III), Florida, Arkansas and Minnesota are expected to cost the FDIC's insurance fund $267.6M.

Today's Markets

  • In Asia, Japan -0.8% to 10216. Hong Kong -0.3% to 22639. China -1.4% to 2853. India +0.1% to 19889.
  • In Europe, at midday, London +0.5%. Paris +1.1%. Frankfurt +1.1%.
  • Futures at 7:00: Dow +0.2%. S&P +0.2%. Nasdaq +0.3%. Crude +0.3% to $88.25. Gold +0.2% to $1382.50.

Monday's Economic Calendar

The SA Currents team contributed to this post.


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Source: Wall Street Breakfast: Must-Know News