Trader Talk

For Bulls And Bears: How Much Of a Slowdown Is There?

So for bulls and bears it's a tough call either way:

Hey, it's an LBO! There's been more sightings of Yetis and Sasquatches than there have been LBOs recently, but here's one: an affiliate of Blackstone Group is acquiring Performance Food Groupin a $1.3 billion transaction. PFGC shareholders will receive $34.50 in cash for each share. That's a 43 percent premium over the close yesterday. PFGC distributes private label food to restaurants and other institutions.

Some more good news for LBO fans: Alliance Data affirmed it is not renegotiating its deal with Blackstone, and deal financing remained fully committed. Up 8 percent pre-open after tumbling yesterday on rumors the deal was in trouble.

GE(our parent company)reported in-line earnings, and affirmed 2008 EPS guidance of 10 percent plus. Solid quarter, GE Money did take a $400 m higher provision for eroding credit quality. This is like Citi, which has also seen consumer erosion, but given the size of GE it's not that bad. NBC Universal was particularly strong, with its first double digit growth in more than two years.

Bond insurer Ambac said raising capital "was not an attractive option" and would continue to evaluate options. Trading up.

Sprint is cutting 4,000 jobs, and closing 8 percent of retail locations.

AMD reported a loss, but it was much less than expected; guided revenue increases consistent with seasonality.

IBMguiding 2008 earnings above expectations($8.20-$8.30 vs. $7.91 expectations), up 6 percent pre-open.

Oil services giant Schlumberger was below expectations, down 7 percent.

Questions?  Comments?