Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wednesday premarket

AlphaNinja - Looks to be another down day. US stock futures indicate a lower open, after ADP says businesses cut 280,000 jobs in August versus the expected 250,000.

From the NYTimes?!?!We'd better keep healthcare a for-profit game, as companies sink $$$ into cancer research.
Virtually every large pharmaceutical company seems to have discovered cancer, and a substantial portion of the smaller biotechnology companies are focused on it as well. Together, the companies are pouring billions of dollars into developing cancer drugs.
Two industry trends are driving the push. Recent scientific discoveries have suggested new targets for cancer drug researchers to attack. And as drug companies see profits beginning to wane from mainstays like Lipitor, the high prices that cancer drugs can command have become an irresistible lure.

The WSJ's Holman W Jenkins on AIG's rising share price.
Enter a new CEO, Robert Benmosche, recently retired from an eight-year stint at MetLife.
He did a few things right away. He stopped the fire sales, said he wouldn't be bullied into dumping assets to repay government backing.

The problem with banks trying to get back to the "3-6-3" model is that the numbers don't add up.

Recent trading in Lehman's shares had exploded, despite the tiny chance that there's anything remaining for equity investors.
First there was the dead-cat bounce -- and now there's the Dick Fuld bounce.
Nearly a year after its spectacular collapse, trading activity in the now-defunct Lehman Brothers has begun spiking, with volume surging to 50 times its normal levels over the past few days.
On Monday, some 125 million shares in Lehman Holdings, as the bankrupt company is now called, changed hands, compared with a meager 2.5 million shares that traded last Thursday.

Private Equity firms, lacking the L (Debt) in LBO's, go back to paying for deals with equity, or at least more in equity. Silver Lake buys Skype.
The firms didn’t say how much debt they’d raise for the Skype purchase, which will be funded mostly with equity. JPMorgan Chase & Co. is leading a financing group that also includes Barclays Plc and Royal Bank of Canada, according to a statement yesterday.
In the Skype deal, the buyers will pay $1.9 billion in cash and will give EBay a $125 million note, the company said. EBay, which had planned an initial public offering for Skype, will retain 35 percent of the business. The deal values Skype at $2.75 billion.

Smoke from California wildfires is killing business in the foothills.
Sept. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Smoke from wildfires near Joanna Nelson’s clothing store in a foothill community north of Los Angeles has cast a shadow over her business, just as she thought the recession was lifting.
“Since Wednesday of last week, business has been zero, nonexistent,” Nelson, 39, said of her shop, Frockx, in the city of La CaƱada Flintridge. “Everyone’s left town.”

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