Alibaba, Yahoo finally reach buyback deal. After months of on-off negotiations, Alibaba (OTC:ALBCF) has agreed to repurchase half of Yahoo's (YHOO) 40% stake in the Chinese company for around $7.1B. Alibaba will pay $6.3B in cash and up to $800M in newly issued stock. If the firm holds an IPO, it will be required to buy back 25% of Yahoo's current stake, or let the U.S. portal sell those shares in the offering. Opinion: A four-point plan for Yahoo's digital media future.
DaVita to buy HealthCare Partners for $4.42B. DaVita (DVA) is set to expand its focus beyond offering just kidney care services after agreeing to acquire HealthCare Partners, the country's largest provider of medical groups and physician networks, for $4.42B in cash and stock. HealthCare has a large presence in California, Nevada and Florida, and earned operating income of $488M in 2011 on revenue of $2.4B. Opinion: Biotech ETFs for an M&A boom.
China may use more stimulus - report. China may soon announce stimulus actions, reports a publication owned by the official Xinhua News Agency. The speculation follows weekend comments from Premier Wen Jiabao in which he called for "putting stabilizing growth in a more important position" but didn't mention inflation. Jiabao's pledge "will be a support for the market when we see clear signs of it," says portfolio manager Shintaro Takeuchi. Opinion: To QE or not QE, that is the question.
Top Stock News
Chesapeake paid $343M to director's firm. A Bloomberg review of Chesapeake's (CHK) filings paints a picture of cronyism and nepotism that calls into question the objectivity of its board. Since 2009, Chesapeake has paid over $343M to a drilling equipment manufacturer headed by Chesapeake lead director Pete Miller. The company has also employed another director’s relatives and donated millions to a university overseen by a third. Opinion: Chesapeake: A $14 bet for risk-seekers only.
Barclays to offload $6.1B BlackRock holdings. Barclays (BCS) plans to sell its $6.1B stake in BlackRock (BLK) via an offering and a related buyback by the U.S. asset manager of up to $1B in shares. Barclays' holdings represent a 19.6% economic interest in the firm. Opinion: Three substantially undervalued financial stocks.
Lowe's tops predictions but it warns on profit. Lowe's (LOW) FQ1 earnings beat forecasts as net profit rose 14% to $527M, adjusted EPS came in at $0.44 and revenue climbed 7.9% to $13.2B, helped by a calendar shift and unusually warm weather. However, while Lowe's plans to open 10 stores in FY 2012, it cut its EPS guidance for the year and said it continues to maintain "a cautious view of the housing and macro-demand environment." Opinion: Lowe's is undervalued, riskier than peers.
China's Dalian to buy U.S. theater group for $2.6B. China's Dalian Wanda Group has agreed to acquire AMC Entertainment for $2.6B including debt, expanding into the U.S. and creating the world's largest movie chain while highlighting the growing ties between the U.S. and Chinese film industries. AMC is owned by buyout firms that include Apollo (APO) and Carlyle (CG). Opinion: Why this hotel stock will bounce on a bigger summer box office.
JPMorgan risk manager had been fired by Cantor Fitzgerald. The top risk officer at JPMorgan's (JPM) Chief Investment Office, Irvin Goldman, was sacked by Cantor Fitzgerald in 2007 after presiding over trading losses that led to a regulatory probe, Bloomberg reports. Goldman was never directly accused of misconduct, but was apparently mirroring his Cantor proprietary trades in his personal account. Goldman was demoted from his position at JPM last week. Opinion: Are JPMorgan's ETNs safe?
Apple, Samsung CEOs to meet over IP war. Apple (AAPL) CEO Tim Cook is today due to meet Samsung (OTC:SSNLF) counterpart Choi Gee-sung in court-ordered talks to try to resolve their companies' world patent war. Samsung yesterday said that while "there is still a big gap" between the companies, it still has "several negotiation options, including cross-licensing." Opinion: Patents, business risk and the value of technology.
Nasdaq owns up to Facebook IPO tech blunder. Nasdaq OMX (NDAQ) CEO Robert Greifeld yesterday admitted that the technical glitches that hampered Facebook's (FB) debut on Friday affected trades involving up to 30M shares. While that's only around 5% of the 580.6M that changed hands, the problems may have hurt the stock's performance by preventing institutions from buying in. Nasdaq now plans to change its IPO auction process. Discussion: What really happened?
China OK's Google's purchase of Motorola. Google's (GOOG) $12B acquisition of Motorola Mobility (MMI) should close this week after it received clearance from China. Google must make its Android OS available at no charge to all partners for five years. Opinion: How to play the end of Google's 'nine lives' around $600.
Top Economic & Other News
Fears rise over JPM pullback in EU mortgage-bond market. JPMorgan (JPM) is the biggest buyer of European home-loan bonds, and investors are worried the bank is planning a pull-back following its CIO disaster. The EU mortgage-bond market could see significant volatility, as JPM's investments are nearly 9% of the size of the Dutch and U.K. sectors it's been focusing on. Opinion: Three ETFs for a eurozone double dip.
Seaway starts to pump crude North-South. The Seaway pipeline started to transport crude oil from Cushing in Oklahoma to refineries in Houston on Saturday following the completion of a reversal project. The new direction of the pipeline, which is owned by Enterprise (EPD) and Enbridge (ENB), should help ease the glut of crude at Cushing and reduce the spread between WTI and Brent prices. Opinion: Enterprise Products is a pipeline cash machine.
In Asia, Japan +0.3%. Hong Kong -0.2%. China +0.2%. India flat.
In Europe, at midday, London -0.6%. Paris +0.9%. Frankfurt +1.1%.
Futures at 7:00: Dow +0.7%. S&P +0.8%. Nasdaq +0.85%. Crude +0.4% to $91.84. Gold flat at $1592.
Today's economic calendar:
5:15 Fed's Lockhart: Monetary Policy
8:30 Chicago Fed National Activity Index
Notable earnings before today's open: CPB, LOW
Notable earnings after today's close: URBN