Samsung to spend $4B on Texas chip plant. Samsung (GM:SSNLF) intends to invest around $4B in its chip plant in Austin, Texas, as it seeks to meet stronger demand for components used in mobile devices. The South Korean company will refurbish an existing production line and increase its output of system chips. The spending adds to 2.25T won ($1.98B) of investment in a new South Korean logic-chip plant that Samsung announced in June.
Jurors set for deliberation hell in Apple vs. Samsung. Jurors are going to have to fill out a verdict form of over 700 questions as they decide whether Samsung (GM:SSNLF) and Apple (AAPL) infringed each others' patents in their mobile devices, with closing arguments set for today. The start of this deliberation hell comes a day after Apple's market cap reached $623.52B, making it the most valuable company in history.
Top Stock News
Siemens mulls slashing thousands of jobs. Siemens (SI) is reportedly in talks about cutting thousands of jobs due to the weak economy, especially in Europe. The conglomerate, which recently warned that its FY goals will be difficult to achieve, will make any decisions in the autumn. Siemens had been on a hiring spree over the last 15 months, increasing employee numbers by 23,000.
Glencore ready to "move on" from Xstrata deal. Glencore (OTC:GLCNF) CEO Ivan Glasenberg has upped the ante in his company's $26B attempt to acquire Xstrata (OTC:XSRAF), saying that it's not a "must-do deal" and that Glencore is ready to "move on" if Xstrata's shareholders block the deal. Qatar Holdings, which owns enough Xstrata stock to do just that, wants Glencore to increase its bid.
Cheniere receives $1B to help build LNG export terminal. Cheniere (CQP) has received $500M from Chinese sovereign fund CIC and the same amount from Singapore Investment Corp. to help build the Houston-based company's LNG export plant, Reuters reports. The investments add to $2B from Blackstone (BX) and $468M from other Asian institutions, and come as companies from the region buy into North American energy assets.
ConocoPhillips, Origin plan to sell $3B stake in LNG project. ConocoPhillips (COP) and Origin Energy (OTC:OGFGF) are looking to sell a $3B 15% stake in their $20B LNG project in Queensland in Australia. Origin said in July that it intends to reduce its holding to 30% from 37.5%, with Bloomberg reporting that ConocoPhillips is now set to do the same. Meanwhile, Sinopec (SNP) is paying $2.1B to raise its stake to 25% from 15%.
Dell's profit seen falling. Dell's FQ2 earnings are due out after the bell, with analysts expecting that EPS fell to $0.45 from $0.54 a year earlier and that revenue declined 6.3% to $14.66B. Dell received cautious comments last week, albeit from analysts reiterating "Buy" ratings. Brean Murray's PC checks lead it to believe Dell will guide below consensus, while Stifel thinks industry conditions need to improve before shares rally.
Micron to provide Elpida with $1B in debt. Micron (MU) reportedly intends to provide Elpida with ¥80B ($1B) in loans and debt guarantees if the U.S. company succeeds in acquiring the bankrupt Japanese chipmaker. The money would come on top of the ¥200B that Micron intends to spend on buying Elpida.
Thiel's Facebook proceeds top $1B after further sale. Early Facebook (FB) investor and director Peter Thiel earned $396M last week after he sold 20.06M shares in the social network following the end of its IPO lockup period. Having sold $640.1M worth of stock in the public offering, Thiel's proceeds are over $1B. He now holds around 8M Facebook shares compared with over 44M before the listing.
Top Economic & Other News
German ECB board member backs Draghi over bond purchases. Mario Draghi appears to have won over German ECB executive-board member Jorg Asmussen to the cause of bond buying, with Asmussen saying that as high peripheral bond yields reflect exchange rate risk, "our monetary policy (is) achieved only incompletely." It's crucial wording and suggests that he's okay with ECB bond purchases as long as they're couched in saving the euro, not financing Spanish and Italian governments.
Skeptics question the billions spent on port expansions. Ports from the Gulf of Mexico to the northeast are spending up to billions of dollars in order to accommodate the supersize container ships that will be able to travel through the Panama Canal once it has finished its expansion in 2015. However, skeptics point out that West Coast terminals can already handle the tankers, and that with so many ports vying for business, there will be few beneficiaries.
In Asia, Japan -0.2%. Hong Kong flat. China +0.5%. India +1.1%.
In Europe, at midday, London +0.3%. Paris +0.7%. Frankfurt +0.4%.
Futures at 7:00: Dow +0.2%. S&P +0.2%. Nasdaq +0.3%. Crude +0.8% to $96.70. Gold +0.3% to $1627.70.
Today's economic calendar:
7:45 ICSC Retail Store Sales
8:45 Fed's Lockhart: U.S. Economic Outlook
8:55 Redbook Chain Store Sales
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