Wall Street Breakfast: Must-Know News

by: Roy Mehta
Roy Mehta
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.

  • Struggling Lehman Set to Bolster Balance Sheet. Lehman Brothers (LEH), which is down about 48% year to date, will raise more than $6 billion from common and preferred stock offerings. The firm also announced it lost $2.88 billion last quarter, far exceeding the $300 million loss analysts were expecting. The earnings announcement, which had been anticipated all weekend, was more than a week earlier than formally scheduled. Shares fell about 7%, in pre-market action.
  • Oil Retreats. Before the open Monday, oil fell $1.21 to $137.33/barrel. On Friday, oil futures jumped almost $11, and traders expect more volatility ahead, as supply concerns along with a weak U.S. dollar will keep prices up.
  • After you finish reading Wall Street BreakfastSeeking Alpha's Market Currentswill keep you current all day long.

  • Gas Hits $4/Gallon. After Friday's record the breaking jump in crude, it was little surprise that gas hit an average of $4/gallon during the weekend. It was the first time the milestone was hit, and was a psychological level for consumers.
  • Major AIG Shareholders Pressure Leadership. Three major shareholders of AIG (NYSE:AIG) sent a letter to the company's board citing a "staggering breakdown of risk controls" and loss in investor confidence three days before the company's May 14th shareholder meeting. AIG is sticking with chief executive Martin Sullivan for now, but it has become clear that a turnaround must come quickly, as the company's stock has fallen 41% this year.
  • U.K.'s Willis Will Acquire U.S. Insurance Broker. Willis Group Holdings (WSH) will pay $1.7 billion in cash and stock for Hilb Rogal & Hobbs (HRH). The acquisition price represented a 52% premium over Friday's close, and will increase Willis Group's annual revenue to $3.4 billion.
  • Apple May Debut New iPhone Monday. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO Steve Jobs is expected by many to reveal his company's second version of the iPhone at the Worldwide Developers Conference on Monday. The new generation's features are still a mystery, but nearly everyone expects 3G integration.
  • Hologic Acquires Third Wave. Hologic (NASDAQ:HOLX) will pay $580 million ($11.25/share) for medical test maker Third Wave Technologies (NYSEARCA:TWTI). The deal price represented a 7% premium over Friday's close. Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) will provide all the financing for the deal
  • Calpers Loses Big on Real Estate Deal. LandSource Communities Development LLC, a partnership which owns 15,000 acres of land outside of Los Angeles, filed for bankruptcy late Sunday. The venture's main investor, the California Public Employees' Retirement System, known as Calpers, is in line to lose much of its $970 million investment, which was made in February 2007.
  • Barclays Seeks More Capital. Barclays (NYSE:BCS) may look to strengthen its balance sheet by selling stock. Analysts estimate the U.K. bank needs at least $13.8 billion as the company's markdowns increase.
  • McDonald's May Sales Increase 7.7%. McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) announced sales at restaurants open for at least 13 months jumped by 7.7%. Same-store sales were boosted by demand in Europe (sales up 9.6%) and in Asia, the Middle East, and Africa (sales up 9.7%). In the U.S., McDonald's breakfast menu helped same-store sales increase 4.3%.

Today's Markets

  • Asia: Nikkei -2.13% to 14,181.38. Hang Seng closed. Shanghai closed. BSE Sensex -3.25% to 15,066.1
  • Europe at midday: London +0.04%. Paris +0.32%. Frankfurt +0.24%.
  • U.S. equity futures are up slightly. Crude +0.84% to $137.38. Gold +0.79% $902.50.

Get Wall Street Breakfast by email -- it's free and takes only seconds to sign up.