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Red Hat’s Purchase; Toll Bros. NYC Worries; Dollar Rally; Unilever’s New CEO; Fed President Sees Room for Cut; Boeing’s Labor Woes
- Red Hat Inc. (RHT) yesterday (Thursday) announced it had purchased privately held software company Qumranet Inc. for $107 million in cash. The Raleigh-based software distrubutor expects the purchase to knock 5 to 6 cents off of its annual earnings per share, The Associated Press reported. Red Hat expects the deal to add $20 million in revenue by the next fiscal year.
- Homebuilder Toll Brothers Inc. (TOL) admitted to concerns about the New York City condo market, which has been one of the last holdouts of the current U.S. housing recession. “It has felt some of the storm that's come to the residential real estate market in the country,” Chief Executive Bob Toll said during the company's third-quarter conference call, Reuters reported.
- The dollar increased to its strongest level against the euro this year, trading at $1.432. The euro has declined over 7% versus the dollar in the last three months. The rally was in part fueled by the European Central Bank’s decision to hold interest rates steady at 4.25% at yesterday’s (Thursday’s) monetary policy meeting, Reuters reported.
- Shares of consumer goods maker Unilever PLC (ADR: UL) increased 5% yesterday (Thursday), bucking the overall trend of the market, on news that industry veteran Paul Polman had been selected as the new chief executive officer. Unilever ADR shares gained $1.31 to close at $27.85.
- Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President Janet Yellen said an interest-rate reduction was not out of the question as the risks to economic growth remain “substantial” and will likely moderate inflation, Bloomberg News reported. The current rate “does not imply a highly accommodative policy stance,” because credit conditions are “probably more restrictive” now than when the Fed started its aggressive easing campaign, Yellen said while speaking in Salt Lake City.
- The Boeing Co.’s (BA) more than 27,000 electricians, riveters, painters and others covered by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers voted to strike in order to oppose management’s latest contract offer due to perceived threats to job security and increased costs for healthcare coverage. Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire and a Federal government mediator stepped in to ask for an additional 48 hours of continued negotiations, The Washington Post reported.