Global Investing Roundups
Canada Staving off Recession; H&R Block Rebounds; Kellogg Buys Chinese Cookie Kingpin; Occidental Petroleum: New $1.1 Billion Hydrocarbon Plant; This Bud's Not For You; Eurzone Inflation Hits 4%; Dubai Ties Into Russia's Energy Sector; Tyson Takes a Bite Out of Indian Food Poultry Processor
- Canada posted 0.4% economic growth for the month of April, after falling in the red for the first three months of the year – its first negative quarter in five years. Economists warned this rebound isn't forward looking, as U.S. demand is still low amid the subprime credit fallout and high gasoline costs, Bloomberg reported.
- Tax preparing leader H&R Block Inc. (HRB) said yesterday (Monday) that it posted 11% revenue for its fiscal fourth quarter, a dramatic shift from its previous quarterly loss. The company benefited from the sale of its Option One mortgage servicing business to Wilbur Ross in April, Reuters reported.
- Battle Creek, Mich.-based cereal maker Kellogg Co. (K) said yesterday (Monday) that it acquired China-based Zhenghang Food Company Ltd., a cookie and cracker maker. The purchase will give a big boost to Kellogg's efforts to expand its product line in the emerging Chinese market, Reuters reported.
- Occidental Petroleum Corp. (OXY) will plunk down $1.1 billion to develop a hydrocarbon gas processing plant and pipeline infrastructure in West Texas, part of an agreement with SandRidge Energy Inc. (SD). Occidental Petroleum will own and operate the facility, and said would expand production by a minimum of 50,000 barrels of oil per day, MarketWatch reported.
- Anheuser Busch (BUD) rejected InBev NV's $46.3 billion takeover and announced a strategic cost-savings plan. The company will cut 10%-15% of its salaried workforce through early retirement and attrition. A memo obtained by Reuters called the changes “difficult, but necessary."
- Inflation in the 15-nation Eurozone hit 4% in June, the highest level in more than 16 years, Bloomberg reported. The increase makes a rate hike by the European Central Bank at its July 3 meeting a near certainty.
- Dubai World and Roskommunenergo, an energy trader whose chairman is the son of a senior Kremlin official, offered to buy the biggest Russian power producer for $5.3 billion. The acquisition by Dubai World would be the first in the Russian energy industry by a Gulf investor, Bloomberg reported.
- Meat producer Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN) announced yesterday (Monday) that it acquired a 51% stake in Godrej Foods Ltd., a poultry processing business in India. Tyson said the joint venture will be called Godrej Tyson Foods, the Associated Press reported. The company expects annual sales to be in the range of $50 million and will likely grow as operations expand.