Trader Talk

Markets Rise on Your Resignation Rumors? You're in Trouble

You're know you're in trouble when the markets go up on speculation you're resigning — that's what Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is facing this morning. Berlusconi denied everything on his Facebook page: "The rumors of my resignation are groundless."

Some in Berlusconi's party insisted that he had not lost a majority, but last week two deputies from his own party defected to another party. Reuters noted that he appears to 314 votes in the 630-seat lower house — that is not a majority.

This may all come to a head tomorrow, when there is a budgetary vote.

Italian 10-year yields passed 6.6 percent, again at new highs. The next bond auction is Nov. 10. The concern is that the tools available are not sufficient to address the crisis: a very small European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF)that does not look like it is going to get big outside contributions, modest bank recapitalization, and bond purchases from a reluctant European Central Bank .

And that guy Marco Polo stole pasta from us: Jin Liqun, chairman of the board of supervisors of China Investment Corp. (China's sovereign wealth fund), explaining why he was reluctant to invest in Europe, blamed that continent's problems on "the accumulated troubles of the worn out welfare society" and that "The labor laws induce sloth, indolence, rather than hardworking."


1. General Dynamics agreed to acquire a competing defense vehicle maker Force Protection for $360 million. General Dynamics will pay Force Protection shareholders $5.52 per share, a 31 percent premium to Friday’s close. The deal is expected to close by the end of this year, and should be accretive to earnings by next year.

2. Sysco beats estimates (55 cents a share vs. 51 cents a share consensus) on stronger-than-expected topline growth. But most of the food servicer’s revenue growth came from price increases — its response to its higher realized food costs.?

3. A slew of corporate debt coming to the market:

a) Tenet Healthcare (THC) raised its senior debt offering by 20 percent to $900 million, which it will use to help pay off existing debt;

b) Health Management Associates is selling $1 billion in senior notes;

c) Chemical maker LyondellBasell priced $1 billion in senior notes to help fund a special dividend; and

d) Sprint Nextel priced $4 billion in notes to help fund Clearwire, of which it holds a majority stake.

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