Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Thursday Watch

Late-Night Headlines
- US foodmakers are betting on a rebound of sales of sweets and baked goods and are introducing new items, including breakfast cookies and dessert pizzas.
- World oil markets are “well supplied,” OPEC President Sheikh Amad Fahd al-Sabah said today in Beijing.
- The US Senate passed a six-month extension of the USA Patriot Act after talks failed to produce a new version of the anti-terrorism law, part of which will expire at the end of the year.

Financial Times:
- Procter & Gamble will adopt the distribution systems and business practices of Gillette Co., which the biggest US household-goods maker bought for $57 billion, citing an interview with CEO Lafley.

Nihon Keizai:
- Sony Corp. is among companies that Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal is considering for investment.

NHK Television:
- KDDI Corp. plans to tie up with Qualcomm Inc. to start distributing television programs for mobile phones in Japan.

Hindu Business Line:
- Coal India Ltd. may cut output of the fuel as inventories pile up at thermal power plants and mines in the country.

Kyodo News:
- Japan’s Foreign Minister Taro Aso said China’s increasing military presence is “beginning to be a considerable threat” to Japan.

Late Buy/Sell Recommendations
Goldman Sachs:
- Reiterated Outperform on ALK, CAKE, SBUX.
- Reiterated Underperform on DRI, MU and HRB.

Night Trading
Asian Indices are -.75% to -.25% on average.
S&P 500 indicated -.02%.
NASDAQ 100 indicated -.03%.

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
- Personal Income for November is estimated to rise .3% versus a .4% increase in October.
- Personal Spending for November is estimated to rise .4% versus a .2% gain in October.
- The PCE Core for November is estimated to rise .2% versus a .1% gain in October.
- Initial Jobless Claims for last week are estimated to fall to 325K versus 329K the prior week.
- Continuing Claims are estimated to fall to 2580K versus 2606K prior.

10:00 am EST
- Leading Indicators for November are estimated to rise .4% versus a .9% increase in October.

BOTTOM LINE: Asian indices are lower on profit-taking in the region after recent strong gains. I expect US equities to open mixed and to trade modestly higher into the afternoon. The Portfolio is 100% net long heading into the day.

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