June 19, 2009 / 12:35 PM / in 8 years

STOCKS NEWS US-Barclays: return to growth is imminent

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0824 ET 19June2009-Barclays: return to growth is imminent
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 Barclays Capital on Friday wrote that there was "increasing
evidence that the recession is ending and that a return to
positive growth is imminent."
 The firm cited a recent drop in U.S. initial jobless claims
in its decision, writing that "this type of plunge is a
hallmark of the end of recessions."
 "Given this backdrop," Barclays wrote, "the Fed is likely
to sound more upbeat on growth prospects than its April
statement that 'the pace of contraction appears to be somewhat
slower' and that 'economic activity is likely to remain weak
for a time.' It may say something along the lines of 'the
economy appears set to return to growth over the next few
months.'"
 Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net
0815 ET 19June2009-Oil rises on economy, concerns over Iran,
Nigeria
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 July crude oil futures rose on Friday, advancing for the
third day in a row as investors hoped the economy may be
stabilizing. The commodity was also was lifted on geopolitical
concerns over key oil producers Iran and Nigeria.
 "We will see support continue to come from Iran and
Nigeria. There is no immediate supply threat from Iran, but in
Nigeria, (there) is an actual physical disruption," oil analyst
Olivier Jakob of Petromatrix said.
 For details, see [ID:nSIN282931]
 The front-month contract rose 1.1 percent to $72.12 per
barrel.
 Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net
0805 ET 19June2009-Private equity firms eye AIG unit: source
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  Several U.S. private equity firms and Taiwanese financial
groups are showing early interest in buying AIG's Taiwan life
insurance unit, banking sources said on Friday, in a deal the
seller hopes could raise around $2 billion.
 U.S. private equity firm JC Flowers & Co and Taiwan's Fubon
Financial Holding Co Ltd 2881.TW were expected to pursue a
bid for the unit, Nan Shan Life, according to sources close to
the process.
 The official auction for the business began within the last
week, sources said, with sell-side adviser Morgan Stanley
MS.N distributing key financial data to potential buyers.
 For details, see [ID:nHKG68156]
 Shares of AIG rose 2 percent to $1.50 in premarket
trading.
 Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net
0757 ET 19June2009-Smith & Wesson up after deal, Q4 revs
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 Shares of Smith & Wesson Holdings Corp SWHC.O rallied in
premarket trading on Friday, after the firearms maker said it
would buy privately held Universal Safety Response Inc in a
cash and stock deal.
 It also reported fourth-quarter revenue that was well ahead
of expectations.
 For details, see [ID:nBNG442491]
 Shares gained 16 percent to $5.72 in premarket trading.
 Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net
0749 ET 19June2009-Dow, S&P futures up; RIM pressures Nasdaq
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 Dow and S&P index futures pointed to a higher open on
Friday, lifted by a weaker U.S. dollar and strength in
commodities, while the Nasdaq was pressured by a weak outlook
from Research in Motion Ltd RIMM.O.
 For details, see [ID:nN19433676]
 Dow Jones industrial average futures DJc1 rose 52 points,
while S&P 500 futures SPc1 gained 8 points, but Nasdaq 100
futures NDc1 were down 4 points.
 Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net
0743 ET 19June2009-Sony CEO: restructuring on track
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 Howard Stringer, chief executive of Sony Corp
SNE.N6758.T, said the company's turnaround efforts were
advancing well.
 The restructuring steps include job cuts, plant closures
and a management reshuffle.
 "We are seeing steady progress and are working to reduce
costs throughout the Sony group by more than 300 billion yen
($3 billion)," Stringer told the company's annual shareholders'
meeting on Friday.
 For details, see [ID:nT102905]
 U.S.-listed shares closed Thursday at $25.98.
 Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net

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