Stock market news

Post Market Update

Stocks that were in focus in U.S. trading on Monday include: Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), Duff & Phelps Corp (NYSE:DUF), Carlyle Group LP (NASDAQ:CG), Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. (NYSE:FCX), McMoRan Exploration Co (NYSE:MMR), Bristol Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE:BMY), Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE), The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR), Cal-Maine Foods Inc (NASDAQ:CALM), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), U.S. Airways Group, Inc. (NYSE:LCC) and KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR).

Market Levels

•    US:  Dow: 13104.10 (1.28%), S&P 500: 1423.53 (1.50%), NASDAQ: 3019.51 (2.00%)
•    Europe: CAC: 3641.07 (0.57%), DAX: 7612.39 (0.00%), FTSE: 5897.81 (-0.47%)
•    Metals: Gold: 1675.80 (1.20%), Silver: 30.23 (0.84%), Copper: 3.65 (1.74%)
•    Energy: Crude Oil: 91.82 (1.12%), Natural Gas: 3.35 (-3.40%)
•    Commodities: Corn: 6.98 (0.61%), Soya Bean: 14.09 (-0.60%), Wheat: 7.78 (-0.10%)
•    Currency: Euro (€) / US Dollar ($) (EURUSD): 1.3196 (0.17%), British Pound Sterling (UK£) / US Dollar ($) (GBPUSD): 1.6249 (-0.51%), US Dollar ($) / Japanese Yen (¥) (USDJPY): 86.7150 (0.93%)
•    10 year US Treasury: 1.757% (0.057)

Market and Economy News Update

U.S. markets rally: U.S. markets closed near the highs of the session after Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell and President Barack Obama voiced optimism on reaching an agreement to prevent tax hikes and spending cuts from taking effect January 1. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) and the S&P 500 (INDEXSP:.INX) soared close to 1.5 percent, while the NASDAQComposite (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) added 2 percent. For the year, the Dow rallied almost 7 percent and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq up more than 10 percent each.

Oil prices jump: Oil prices gained on Monday amid investor hopes about a positive outcome to the U.S. budget talks. Crude oil for February delivery added 1.1 percent, to settle at $91.82 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent oil for February settlement rose 0.4 percent to $111.27 a barrel on the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange.

Stocks in Focus

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) rallied in trade after BMO Capital Markets, known for bearish comments on the social-networking site, upgraded the stock to “buy” from “sell” and raised its price target to $32 from $15. BMO Capital analyst Daniel Salmon was the last Wall Street analyst to carry a sell rating on the social network’s stock among the covering brokers.

Duff & Phelps Corp (NYSE:DUF)

Duff & Phelps Corp (NYSE:DUF) surged in Monday trading after the investment-banking company agreed to be acquired by a group including private-equity firm Carlyle Group LP (NASDAQ:CG) for about $665 million. The consortium plans to acquire Duff & Phelps Corp (NYSE:DUF) for $15.55 a share in cash. Board members of Duff & Phelps Corp (NYSE:DUF) have approved the transaction. The deal is expected to close by June 2013.

Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. (NYSE:FCX)

Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. (NYSE:FCX) had slashed its cash bid for McMoRan Exploration Co (NYSE:MMR), following poor test results at one of McMoRan’s wells, according to a regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. (NYSE:FCX) cut its bid by nearly 5 percent from $15.50 to $14.75 per share, just days before making the plans for the deal public on December 5. Shares of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. (NYSE:FCX) added 3.2 percent to end at $34.20 a share.

Bristol Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE:BMY), Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE)

Bristol Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE:BMY) jumped 2.2 percent to $32.59 after it received approval for its anti-clotting oral medication Eliquis. Bristol Myers Squibb Co. (NYSE:BMY) announced last Friday after market close, along with partner Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had approved Eliquis, for patients with a heart-rhythm disorder called atrial fibrillation, a leading cause of stroke and dangerous blood clots. Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) also closed higher in Monday trading.

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR)

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) and cable and broadband provider Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR) have entered into a multi-year agreement under which The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS)-owned channels will be available to Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR) customers across multiple platforms. The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) said the Charter agreement includes the ABC broadcast network as well as cable channels ABC Family, Disney, Disney Junior, and others. Shares of both The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) and Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR) moved higher in trade today.

Cal-Maine Foods Inc (NASDAQ:CALM)

Cal-Maine Foods Inc (NASDAQ:CALM) said fiscal second-quarter earnings fell 39 percent to $14.3 million, or 60 cents per share, from $23.3 million, or 97 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Revenue increased 13 percent to $328.9 million. Cal-Maine Foods Inc (NASDAQ:CALM), the largest producer and distributor of fresh-shell eggs in the U.S., sold 238.1 million dozen eggs, up 9.1 percent from a year earlier, and the average price rose 4 percent to $1.32 a dozen. Cal-Maine Foods Inc (NASDAQ:CALM) shares closed Monday at $40.22.

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)’s new treatment of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis, the first new drug aimed at the disease in close to four decades. The drug, Sirturo, will treat patients by blocking an energy-producing enzyme that tuberculosis bacteria need to survive. About 12 million people worldwide had tuberculosis in 2011, and about 630,000 had multidrug-resistant tuberculosis, according to Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ). Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) shares were 0.9 percent higher to $70.10.

U.S. Airways Group, Inc. (NYSE:LCC)

American Airlines pilots have approved a tentative framework for a potential merger with U.S. Airways Group, Inc. (NYSE:LCC). The board of the Allied Pilots Association, which represents 10,000 American pilots, declined to provide details of the agreement. A combination of American Airlines and U.S. Airways Group, Inc. (NYSE:LCC) would surpass United Continental Holdings Inc. as the world’s largest airline, based on passenger traffic. Shares of U.S. Airways Group, Inc. (NYSE:LCC) soared more than 5 percent on Monday.


Private equity group KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR) is considering a 1.8 billion pounds ($2.9 billion) takeover bid for Trader Media Group, the company behind British used car website Autotrader, The Sunday Times reported on Monday. Newspaper publisher, Guardian Media Group, owns 50.1 percent of Autotrader, while buyout firm Apax Partners controls the rest. Guardian Media Group and for KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR) both declined to comment. KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR) closed up 3.3 percent on Monday at $15.19.