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Notes from Laird Bieger of Baron Capital, Mark Wynegar of Tributary Capital Management, and Amy Zhang of Alger Funds' presentation from the 2020 Monringstar Investment Conference. Q2 2020 hedge fund letters, conferences and more Up-and-Coming Small- and Mid-cap Portfolio Managers Our manager research team has been publishing its semiannual Morningstar Prospects report for several years. Read More
• US: Dow: 12909.00 (-0.40%), S&P 500: 1399.30 (-0.43%), NASDAQ: 2627.50 (-0.26%)
• Europe: CAC: 3501.99 (-0.77%), DAX: 7283.59 (-0.35%), FTSE: 5786.98 (-0.56%).
• Asia-Pacific: Australia: 4424.20 (0.25%), China: 2017.46 (-0.49%), Hong Kong: 21861.81 (-0.24%), India: 5635.90 (0.17%), Japan: 9388.94 (0.24%).
• Metals: Gold: 1750.30 (-0.06%), Silver: 34.13 (0.04%), Copper: 3.53 (0.16%)
• Energy: Crude Oil: 87.84 (-0.50%), Natural Gas: 3.75 (-3.87%)
• Commodities: Corn: 7.54 (0.44%), Soya Bean: 14.27 (0.91%), Wheat: 8.64 (0.29%)
• Currency: EUR/USD: 1.2961 (-0.08%), GBP/USD: 1.6010 (-0.12%), USD/JPY: 82.1200 (-0.33%)
• 10 year US Treasury: 1.654% (-0.036)
Financial and Economic News Update
U.S. stock-index futures drop: U.S. stock-index futures are pointing to a lower open on Monday, as investors shift their focus to “fiscal cliff” talks. No major economic or corporate reports are expected on Monday.
European markets fall: European markets were down in trade today, with the German DAX (INDEXDB:DAX) dropping 0.4 percent to 7283.59, the FTSE 100 (INDEXFTSE:UKX) falling 0.6 percent to 5786.98 and the CAC 40 (INDEXEURO:PX1) edging 0.7 percent lower to 3501.99. The euro zone blue-chip ESTX 50 PR.EUR (INDEXSTOXX:SX5E) (Euro Stoxx 50) was trading 0.7 percent lower.
Asian markets end mostly lower: Asian markets closed lower on Monday with the HANG SENG INDEX (INDEXHANGSENG:HIS) down 0.2 percent at 21,861.8 points, while the SSE Composite Index (SHA:000001) (Shanghai Composite Index) shed 0.5 percent. Japan’s NIKKEI 225 (INDEXNIKKEI:NI225) rose 0.2 percent to 9,388.94 points, the highest closing level since April 27. The S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) index closed up 11.1 points to 4,422.1. The benchmark Indian 30-share BSE SENSITIVE (INDEXBOM:SENSEX) index gained 0.2 percent.
Company News Update
• Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) and Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT) will be in focus today after the National Retail Federation reported that the Black Friday weekend brought in a record $59.1 billion in sales, up 13 percent from the same period last year.
• ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) is planning to sell its 8.4 percent stake in the North Caspian Sea Production Sharing Agreement to the international arm of India’s Oil & Natural Gas Corporation Limited (NSE:ONGC) (BOM:500312), in a deal valued at around $5 billion.
• Internet retailer Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) will hire 2500 people over the next three years for a fourth logistics hub in France.
• Knight Capital Group Inc. (NYSE:KCG) soared 15 percent in early morning trade amid reports that the trading firm expects to receive a takeover proposal as early as this week.
• UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH), the biggest U.S. health insurer, projected earnings below analyst expectations for next year, but forecast sales that topped estimates. Earnings in 2013 will be $5.25 to $5.50 a share, while revenue will be between $123 billion to $124 billion. Wall Street analysts predicted earnings of $5.58 a share and revenue of $119.4 billion.
• Dreamworks Animation Skg Inc (NASDAQ:DWA) lost 4 percent in pre- market trading after “Rise of the Guardians” opened with weekend sales of $24 million in North American theaters. The movie was forecast to rake in $32.1 million, according to BoxOffice.com.
• Gold Fields Limited (ADR) (NYSE:GFI), the world’s fourth-largest producer of the metal, posted a drop in third-quarter earnings as strikes and a fire cut output at its South African operations.
• Canadian private equity firm Onex Corporation (TSE:OCX) will buy insurance broker USI Insurance Services LLC from GS Capital Partners for $2.3 billion.
• Regional lender BancorpSouth, Inc. (NYSE:BXS) has named James Rollins as its chief executive officer.
• Insperity Inc (NYSE:NSP) has declared a special cash dividend of $ 1 per share.
• Chinese meat and food processor Zhongpin Inc. (NASDAQ:HOGS) has agreed to merge with Golden Bridge Holdings Ltd.
• Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is up percent in early morning trade after analysts at Citigroup initiated research coverage of the stock with a buy rating and a price target of $675 a share.
• Analysts at Bernstein Research raised Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) to “outperform” from “market perform.”
• Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) gained 2.4 percent in New York pre-maker trading after Goldman Sachs added the stock to its “conviction buy” list and increased its price target by 9.1 percent to $24.
• Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC) fell 4 percent in London following a Reuters report that sovereign wealth fund Qatar Holding had disposed off its remaining warrants (convertible securities) in the British lender.
• UBS AG (NYSE:UBS) dropped 0.5 percent after the U.K. Financial Services Authority said it was fining the Swiss investment bank 29.7 million pounds ($47.6 million) for failings to avoid a $2.3 billion trading loss.
• Aberdeen Asset Management plc (LON:ADN) said full-year pretax profit increased to 269.7 million pounds from 224.1 million in the year-ago period. Assets under management at the year-end stood at 187.2 billion pounds versus 169.9 billion pounds last year.
• Fiat Industrial SpA (BIT:FI) and its US unit CNH Global NV (ADR) (NYSE:CNH) announced they have reached a definitive agreement for their merger into a new company.
• London-listed miner Anglo American plc (LON:AAL) fell 0.6 percent after it completed the sale of a South African steel-making unit and related companies for 3.4 billion rand ($383 million) in cash.
• French cement maker Lafarge S.A. (EPA:LG) lost 2.5 percent amid political instability in Egypt. The world’s largest cement maker gets almost a fourth of its revenue from the Middle East and Africa.
• Cosmetics major L’Oreal (EPA:OR) has agreed to buy U.S.-based specialty makeup company Urban Decay from private-equity firm Castanea Partners.
• Dutch phone company Koninklijke KPN N.V. (AMS:KPN) gained 4 percent after the stock was lifted to “buy” from “neutral” at Bank of America Corp.
• Analysts at Credit Suisse downgraded German steel-maker ThyssenKrupp AG (ETR:TKA) (FRA:TKA) to “neutral” from “outperform” citing a weak outlook for next year.
• Paint maker Akzo Nobel N.V. (AMS:AKZA) slid 1.3 percent as analysts at Citigroup Inc. cut the stock to “sell” from “neutral.”
• Japanese consumer electronics giants, Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE) (TYO:6758) and Panasonic Corporation (NYSE:PC) (TYO:6752) slumped in Tokyo trade after credit rating agency Fitch downgraded both companies to non-investment or “junk” on Friday.
• Rio Tinto plc (ADR) (NYSE:RIO) (LON:RIO) (ASX:RIO) managing director for China, Ian Bauert said he expects substantial demand growth for resources in coming years despite the slowdown in the Chinese economy.
• Hong Kong-listed carrier Cathay Pacific Airways Limited (HKG:0293) fell 1 percent after Chief Executive Officer John Slosar said the airline must reduce expenses in the face of tough competition and challenging global economic conditions.
• Embattled chipmaker Renesas Electronics Corporation (TYO:6723) soared 17 percent after the Nikkei business daily reported that its shareholders have approved a bailout from a government-backed fund.
• Qantas Airways Limited (ASX:QAN) rallied 2.8 percent after the Australian Financial Review reported over the weekend that a group of former executives and investors had acquired a stake in the airline.
• British healthcare and drug major GlaxoSmithKline plc (ADR) (NYSE:GSK) (LON:GSK) is planning to raise its stake in its Indian consumer products unit to 75 percent from 43.16 percent for about $940 million, according to a Reuters report.
• Japanese energy and engineering company Hitachi, Ltd. (TYO:6501) has completed the acquisition of Britain’s Horizon Nuclear Power Limited from German utilities RWE AG (ETR:RWE) (FRA:RWE) and E.ON AG (ETR:EOAN) (FRA:EOAN).
• French car-maker Renault SA (EPA:RNO) is planning to launch a joint venture to build cars in China with the country’s second-largest automaker, Dongfeng Motor Group Co. Ltd (HKG:0489), the China Business News reported on Monday.
• Jet Airways (India) Limited (NSE:JETAIRWAYS) (BOM:532617) hit a 52-week high amid reports that the loss-making Indian carrier is in talks with Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways to sell a minority stake.
Economic Calendar for Monday, November 26, 2012:
08:30 A.M. ET: Chicago Fed National Activity Index (October)
10:30 A.M. ET: Dallas Fed Manufacturing Business Index (November)
11:00 A.M. ET: 4-Week Bill Announcement
11:30 A.M. ET: 3-Month Bill Auction
11:30 A.M. ET: 6-Month Bill Auction