Friday, July 29, 2005

Friday Watch

Late-Night Headlines
- Google's plan to open a research center in China was disrupted today in Seattle, where a state judge temporarily blocked the company from hiring a former Microsoft executive to head the facility.
- Crude oil is rising to a two-week high and gasoline surged after an explosion and fire at the third-largest US refinery owned by BP Plc in Texas City.
- The US and North Korea will hold a fourth bilateral meeting today in Beijing as six nations try to hammer out an agreement on ending the communist country's nuclear weapons program.

Wall Street Journal:
- Italy may as early as today request indictments of units of Citigroup, UBS, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley units for alleged securities violations connected to Parmalat SpA.

- New York State's Republican Party chairman, seeking a candidate to succeed Governor Pataki, said his first phone call would be to former NYC Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.

London-based Times:
- London is facing a terror "campaign – not a one-off event," citing Metropolitan Police Commissioner Ian Blair.

Economic Daily News:
- Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing received orders from Microsoft to make chips for the company's game consoles.

South China Morning Post:
- Cnooc Ltd. is preparing to withdraw or let its $18.5 billion cash bid for Unocal Corp. lapse because management believes a deal is politically impossible.

Late Buy/Sell Recommendations
Goldman Sachs:
- Reiterated Outperform on KLAC and DDR.
- Reiterated Underperform on MRO and AEIS.

Business Week:
- Symbol Technologies(SBL), the maker of bar-code scanners whose stock has dropped 32% this year, may become an acquisition target.
- TurboChef(OVEN) shares are expected to climb as the maker of high-speed cook-to-order commercial ovens receives a boost in its orders.
- Shares of Stratagene(STGN), which makes testing products for biochemical research, may rise because of higher profit and a possible partner for it DNA testing instrument.

Night Trading
Asian Indices are unch. to +.50% on average.
S&P 500 indicated +.02%.
NASDAQ 100 indicated +.09%.

Morning Preview
US AM Market Call
NASDAQ 100 Pre-Market Indicator/Heat Map
Pre-market Commentary
Before the Bell CNBC Video(bottom right)
Global Commentary
Asian Indices
European Indices
Top 20 Business Stories
In Play
Bond Ticker
Daily Stock Events
Macro Calls
Rasmussen Consumer/Investor Daily Indices
CNBC Guest Schedule

Earnings of Note
Company/EPS Estimate

Upcoming Splits
None of note

Economic Releases
8:30 am EST
- Advance 2Q GDP is estimated to rise 3.5% versus estimates of a 3.8% gain in 1Q.
- Advance 2Q Personal Consumption is estimated to rise 3.5% versus a 3.8% increase in 1Q.
- Advance 2Q GDP Price Index is estimated to rise 2.6% versus a 2.9% increase in 1Q.
- The 2Q Employment Cost Index is estimated to rise .7% versus a .8% gain in 1Q.

9:45 am EST
- Final Univ. of Mich. Consumer Confidence for July is estimated at 96.5 versus a prior estimate of 96.5.

10:00 am EST
- Chicago Purchasing Manager for July is estimated to rise to 55.0 versus a reading of 53.6 in June.

BOTTOM LINE: Asian indices are mostly higher on gains in commodity-related shares in the region. I expect US equities to open modestly higher on positive economic reports. However, stocks may consolidate recent gains later in the day. The Portfolio is 100% net long heading into the day.

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