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Primary Fund "Breaks the Buck;" Samsung's Hostile Bid; Gold Shines; Oil Rebounds; Construction Slowest in 17 years; Barclays Could Buy More Lehman Assets; GE and Google Go Green; Wachovia Reaches Out to Morgan Stanley
- The Reserve's Primary Fund (RFIXX), one of the largest and oldest U.S. money market funds was forced to place a 7-day freeze on redemptions when its net asset value (NAV) fell below $1. The fund's shares dropped to 97 cents as its $785 million holding of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. (LEH) debt has been valued at zero, The Reserve said, MarketWatch reported.
- SanDisk Corp. (SNDK) stock surged almost 40% after Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. made a $5.85 billion hostile takeover offer for the memory-device maker. SanDisk shares surged $5.88 to close at $20.92 yesterday (Wednesday).
- The price of gold skyrocketed yesterday (Wednesday) posting its biggest one-day gain ever in dollar terms. Gold for December delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange after jumping $70 to settle at $850.50 in the regular session, The Associated Press reported.
- Oil ended its slump yesterday (Wednesday) shooting up $6 a barrel after a week and a half of substantial declines. Light, sweet crude for October delivery rose $6.01, or 6.59 percent, to settle at $97.16 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices slid more than $5 to close at $91.15 on Tuesday.
- Construction of new homes grew at the weakest pace in 17 years in August, dropping 6.2% the Commerce Department reported. Building permits, an indicator of future activity, dropped 8.9% for the month to an annual rate of 854,000 units.
- Barclays PLC (ADR: BCS) said yesterday (Wednesday) that it could acquire more Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. (LEH) assets to expand its presence in Europe and Asia. " ," Barclays President Robert D. Diamond Jr. said in a conference call with analysts, The Associated Press reported. "It would most typically be where Lehman has a strong position and BarCap (Barclays Capital) a weak position."
- General Electric Co. (GE) and Google Inc. (GOOG) announced (Wednesday) they would jointly lobby for alternative energy. GE's Jeffrey Immelt and Google's Eric Schmidt said at a public event that the companies would team up on a "policy partnership" in Washington intended to promote "tomorrow's power generation, transmission and distribution," MarketWatch reported.
- Wachovia Corp. (WB) is considering a possible merger with Morgan Stanley (MS), one of the last two big independent brokerage firms. Morgan Stanley chief executive, John J. Mack, received a telephone call yesterday (Wednesday) from Wachovia expressing interest in the Wall Street investment bank, The New York Times reported. Wachovia declined to comment.