HP Beats 4Q Forecasts; Carrefour Milks New CEO From Nestle; InBev Officially Closes Anheuser Buy; Home Depot Beats 3Q Estimate; Gulf Bank Loses $1.4 Billion; Mexican Tycoon Interested in Circuit City; Wholesale Prices Plummet
- Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ), the world’s largest maker of personal computers, offered a preview of its fiscal fourth-quarter profits – reporting that it will beat market expectations and raise its fiscal 2009 outlook. “HP is gaining market share in an extremely strong competitive position. They've got share gains, combined with very aggressive cost reduction,” Shannon Cross of Cross Research told Reuters.
- Lars Olofsson, Executive Vice President of Nestle SA, has been named Chief Executive Officer of Carrefour S.A., the world’s second-largest retailer. He’ll join the company in at the Carrefour’s next shareholder meeting in January, MarketWatch reported.
- Belgium’s InBev NV officially completed its $52 billion, or $70 a share, acquisition of Anheuser-Busch Cos., Inc. (BUD), as it won its last regulatory approval from China. The combined company will be based in St. Louis and , Dow Jones reported.
- The Home Depot, Inc. (HD) reported a 31% decline in earnings during its fiscal third quarter ended Nov. 2. Profit declined 31% as well, but the home retailer expected steeper loses in the face of the U.S. housing crisis, Reuters reported.
- Kuwait's Gulf Bank – the country’s second-largest lender – said Monday that it had lost $1.4 billion (375 million dinars) as a result of trading in derivatives and other financial instruments for customers who subsequently defaulted. The bank also said its board had resigned. To allay investor fears, Gulf Bank announced a plan to double its capital base by issuing 1.25 billion new shares. Investors knew there were losses. But . Trading in Gulf Bank shares remains suspended for their fourth week, Forbes.com reported.
- Mexican retail and media tycoon Ricardo Salinas Pliego could be building a controlling stake in bankrupt electronics retailer Circuit City Stores Inc. (OTC: CCTYQ), Reuters reported. Salinas already owns 28% of the company, having accumulated stock in the open market before and after the retail chain went bankrupt.
- , The Associated Press reported. Wholesale prices dropped by a record 2.8% last month, as the cost of oil and other raw materials declined.