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With our investment news briefs, Money Morning provides investors with a quick overview of the most important investing news stories from all around the world.
B&D Raised 3Q Outlook; Barrick Buys Controlling Stake in Xstrata Mine; Soros Invests $1.1 Billion in Clean Energy Reform; Blackstone Prepping IPOs; Philips Electronics Profits While Sales Fall; China Raising Stakes in Biggest Banks; Acer Raises Outlook, Expects Strong 4Q; Canada May Raise Rates Within Year
- Black and Decker Corp. (NYSE: BDK) raised its outlook for the third quarter to 91 cents a share from 35 cents to 45 cents a share, citing better than expected sales and a lower tax rate. The lower tax rate is expected to add 14 cents a share to the tool maker's quarter profit, Reuters reported. "Sales were modestly better than we had anticipated, due largely to earlier-than-expected shipments during the quarter of promotional items in the U.S. industrial power tools and accessories business, which were previously anticipated to occur in the fourth quarter," Chief Executive Nolan Archibald said in a statement.
- The world's largest gold producer, Barrick Gold Corp. (NYSE: ABX) agreed to buy a 70% interest in the El Morro mining project in Chile from Australia-based Xstrata plc (PINK ADR: XSRAY) for $465 million, RTT News reported. "While we have demonstrated through the feasibility study that El Morro has strong prospects, our agreement with Barrick is a recognition that it will create more value as part of Barrick's portfolio than Xstrata Copper's," said Xstrata Copper's chief executive Charlie Sartain.
- Billionaire investor George Soros said he will invest $1 billion in clean-energy technology and will establish and donate $100 billion over 10 years to the Climate Policy Initiative, an environmental lobby group, Bloomberg reported. "I want to apply rather stringent criteria to the investments," Soros said in e-mailed statement to Bloomberg. "They should be profitable but should also actually make a contribution to solving the problem."
- With the initial public offering (IPO) market gaining steam, Blackstone Group (NYSE: BX) is eyeballing eight of its portfolio companies for public offering, a source told Reuters. The source said Blackstone sent a letter to investors saying it is positioning one company, Team Health, Inc., for an IPO and is evaluating the potential for seven others, the source said.
- Philips Electronics NV (NYSE ADR: PHG), maker of everything from electric shavers to HD televisions, beat third-quarter estimates as a result of cost-cutting measures and better-than-expected revenue, MarketWatch reported. Despite an 11% drop in sales, the company's more than profit tripled to $256 million (174 million euros). Analysts polled by FactSet expected a loss of $60.5 million (41 million euros) and sales of 48 billion (5.45 billion euros), MarketWatch reported.
- Seeking to jumpstart markets and maintain consumer confidence, China's $300 billion sovereign wealth fund will raise its stakes in the country's three biggest banks – Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd., China Construction Bank Corp. (PINK ADR: CICHY) and Bank of China Ltd., Bloomberg reported. "Buying shares in financials, which have the biggest weighting in the index, will have an immediate impact on lifting investors' confidence," Wang Cheng, a Shanghai-based strategist at Guotai Junan Securities Co., told Bloomberg. "The move is an indication the government isn't that optimistic about the market."
- Taiwan-based Acer Inc., the world's third-largest computer brand, raised its third-quarter outlook by about 5% and expects PC shipments to increase in the fourth quarter because of a rebound in tech demand, Reuters reported. Many analysts expect Acer and U.S. rival Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) to emerge from downturn faster than its peers. Acer will release its third-quarter earnings report Oct. 30.
- Canada's central bank may raise interest rates within the next year as its employment outlook improves and its dollar strengthens, Bloomberg reported. Canada added 30,600 jobs in August, six times more than forecast, sending the unemployment rate down to 8.4% from 8.7%. Canada's lending rate was lowered to 0.25% in April and the Bank of Canada said it would remain at that rate for at least a year.