Friday, December 28, 2007

Today's Headlines

- A Taliban commander linked to al-Qaeda is suspected of plotting the suicide attack that killed former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, Pakistan’s government said.
- Macy’s Inc.(M), Best Buy(BBY) and Abercrombie & Fitch(ANF) may get a boost in store traffic and revenue in the next few weeks from the redemption of gift cards, which are growing faster than total retail sales.
- The cost of borrowing in dollars, euros and pounds fell, capping a second week of declines, as coordinated central bank action to revive money markets showed signs of success.
- Checkpoint Systems(CKP), the maker of anti-theft tags for retailers, rose the most in nine months after it named a new CEO and forecast 2008 earnings exceeding analysts’ estimates.

- Farmers in India, the world’s second-biggest wheat grower, may harvest more of the crop following early planting and “good weather” in the main growing areas, lowering overseas purchases. The country may harvest more than 75 million tons of wheat during the March-April harvest, the most since 2000, the nation’s agriculture commissioner said.
- Crude oil is rising to a one-month high on year-end investment fund mark-ups and a weaker dollar.
- Treasuries rose the most in more than two weeks and headed for the best annual returns since 2002 after a government report showed sales of new homes in the US fell more than expected.
- Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards said neither of his two major opponents would bring substantial change to the way Washington works – Hillary Clinton doesn’t want to and Barack Obama doesn’t know how.

Wall Street Journal:
- Warren Buffett, seizing a chance to profit from turmoil in the nation’s credit markets, is starting up a bond insurer that aims to make it cheaper for local governments to borrow and promises to be a tough competitor for the industry’s embattled incumbents.

NY Times:
- US companies are working with the Chinese government to design and install high-tech public surveillance systems as the country prepares for the Beijing Olympics.

NY Post:
- NY’s population stays almost unchanged.

- Google’s(GOOG) online search engine increased its lead in the US Internet search market in November over October, according to a report released Thursday by Nielsen Online.

- Wind farms are popping up across the US to generate renewable electric energy, and that’s driving a large backlog of wind-tower business at Dallas-based industrial manufacturer Trinity Industries Inc.(TRN).

Information Times:
- China’s number of mobile-phone users may climb to 620 million next year, bringing the total telephone subscribers in the country to 976 million. Sales from the country’s communications industry may rise 25% to $342 billion in 2008 from a year earlier, citing comments by Wang Xudong, who heads the Ministry of Information Industry.

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