Thursday, December 22, 2005

Today's Headlines

- UK Prime Minister Tony Blair arrived in Iraq on an unannounced trip to visit British troops and US officials.
- Japan’s population will decline this year for the first time since 1899, a trend that is expected to continue, reducing the government’s ability to raise tax revenue and repay debt.
- GE will buy Arden Realty for $45.25/share, adding the biggest publicly traded landlord in southern California as US real estate acquisitions accelerate.
- Placer Dome agreed to an increased takeover offer from Barrick Gold valued at $10.4 billion, uniting the two Canadian companies to create the world’s largest gold producer.
- Natural Gas prices are having their biggest drop in more than a year because of mild weather forecasts and a smaller-than-expected decline in stored supplies.
- Striking subway and bus workers in NYC agreed to end a three-day walkout today.

Wall Street Journal:
- Albertson’s may not accept a takeover offer from investors including Cerberus Capital Management, valuing the company at $9.6 billion.
- EntreMed’s cancer drug has shown promising results in human tests in China after failing to meet test objectives in the US.
- John Whitehead, former chairman of Goldman Sachs, said New York Democratic Attorney General Eliot Spitzer phoned him and said there was a “war” between them after Whitehead criticized Spitzer in an April commentary.

NY Times:
- President Bush has met with new NAACP President Gordon three times since September as he seeks to reach out to critics.

USA Today:
- NY’s population fell and more Californians left than moved in, citing Census figures.
- Volunteers and non-governmental organizations are helping rebuild areas affected by Hurricane Katrina as relief work moves forward.

Daily Telegraph:
- Harley-Davidson now has a larger market value than GM.

- Russian President Putin called on the government to boost the attractiveness of the nation’s energy industry for foreign investors.

- Ford Motor union workers at three plants rejected a health-care plan that would save the automaker $850 million annually.

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