Wednesday Morning View From Europe

by: Dealing Floor

From DealingFloor:


- U.K.’s Brown May Have to Borrow More to Avoid Tax Increase, Survey Shows
- Sanofi, Bristol Myers Shares May Rise on Blood Thinner Plavix Settlement
- Australia’s Wheat Output to Reach 24 Million Tons in 2006-07, USDA Says
- Gold in Asia Rises on Inflation Concern After Gain in U.S. Prices Measure
- Crude Oil Is Little Changed After Rising on Concern Over Gasoline Supply


- Earnings of note: Unicredito, HVB, TUI, Metro and Enel

- Sanofi-Aventis SA and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. said they’ve
settled a patent suit that would keep a generic version of their
blood thinner Plavix, the world’s second-biggest drug, off the
market until 2011.

- UBS places 3.5m shares of Business Objects on behalf of Silver Lake and TPG.

- Porsche AG is targeting a sales increase in the Middle East this
fiscal year, helped by the Cayenne sport-utility vehicle.

- Scottish Power Plc said it has completed the sale of its U.S. PacifiCorp
unit to MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co. for $5.1 billion in cash.

- Metro AG, the world’s third-largest retailer, said profit slumped last year
because of a drop in sales at the German company’s Real hypermarkets. Earnings
will rise in 2006 as Metro expands outside its home market.
Net income fell to 501 million euros, or 1.63 euros a share, from 760 million
euros, or 2.53 euros, a share, a year earlier. Earnings per share from
continuing operations will increase 5 percent to 8 percent in 2006, Metro said.


- Nike (after hours -0.72%) released earnings of $1.24 per share. Total revenues
rose 9% year/year to $3.6 bln (consensus $3.53 bln). Co reported worldwide
futures order growth for athletic footwear and apparel growth, excluding
currency effects, of 5.4% vs. expected growth of 7-8% for March 06 through July
06, totaling $5.4 bln. By region, futures orders for the U.S. increased 6% vs.
+6-9% street expectation; Europe (including the Middle East and Africa) declined
2% vs. +0-2% street expectations; Asia Pacific grew 5% vs. 6-9% street
expectations; and the Americas increased 10% vs. 14-16% street expectations.

- Sanofi-Aventis (+6% after hours) and Bristol-Myers Squibb (+8% after hours)
announced that they have reached an agreement subject to certain conditions with
Apotex Inc. and Apotex Corp. to settle the patent infringement lawsuit pending
between the parties. The trial in the lawsuit had previously been scheduled to
begin in June 2006. As a result of the agreement, the Court has now suspended
the trial date pending the possible finalization of the proposed settlement.


Morgan Stanley and Fedex reported before the US opening bell. Adobe will post
quartely results after the market close.