For the week ending Friday, May 23, 2008, all major indices declined more that 3% for the week, their worst weekly drop since April 18. The Dow recorded its biggest 2-day point drop since the end of February. Skyrocketing oil prices and news from the Federal Reserves’ FOMC minutes drove the declines. Over 10 billion shares and $200 billion traded this week in the CNBC Million Dollar Portfolio Challenge.
Next week the markets will look to preliminary GDP, Personal Income and Spending numbers. There will be fewer companies reporting earnings, but look to Dell and Costco to report on Thursday.
M&A, Deals, Corp Actions:
- Belgian brewer InBev approached its U.S. rival Anheuser-Busch with a $46 billion acquisition offer or $65/share. News of merger lifted BUD 9.43% for the week.
- Time Warner agreed to spin off its cable unit Time Warner Cable (TWC) and will distribute $10.9 billion in dividends to Time Warner Cable shareholders.
- NRG Energy proposed a deal to acquire Calpine Corp (CPN) for $11 billion in stock. The merger would create the largest power company in the US with a total market capitalization of $22 billion. Calpine which emerged from bankruptcy proceedings in January saw its shares jump 7.83% for the week.
- Halliburton , the world’s second biggest oil services company, offered to buy U.K oil field service firm Expro International Group for $3.4 billion. Shares of Halliburton traded down 3.46% for the week.
- BCE Inc , a Canadian Telecommunication giant had the Quebec Court of Appeal reject its buyout offer of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, as the court found the deal unfair to bondholders. Shares of BCE plummeted 12.39% for the week.
- Microsoft’s CEO Steve Ballmer stated on Friday that the company is not interested in pursuing a bid on Yahoo , as Microsoft is looking for other possible acquisitions.
- GE’s NBC Universal and Blackstone Group (BX) are partnering to bid for the Weather Channel cable network for about $3-4 billion. The Weather Channel could potentially be combined with NBC’s own Weather Plus Network. Shares of GE and BX were down 5.29% or 7.81% respectively for the week