Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Stock Market News, Financial News - Mar 18, 2009

Investment drought spells fresh energy crisis

By Barbara Lewis and Simon Webb

VIENNA (Reuters) - No sooner has the world recovered from a deep economic downturn than it could face a set-back from surging oil prices, energy leaders warned on Wednesday, citing a sharp drop in investment in the sector.

Representatives of consumers, producers, national and international oil companies agreed at an OPEC seminar that a weaker oil price had meant delayed or cancelled projects. (More ...)

Maxis commits $10 billion to Aircel

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Malaysia's Maxis Communications Bhd is investing $10 billion in its Indian unit Aircel to accelerate its expansion in the world's fastest-growing mobile market, and is interested in bidding for 3G spectrum.

Half of that has already been spent expanding Aircel's network, Maxis chief executive Sandip Das said at the launch of services in the lucrative Delhi zone on Wednesday, adding he hoped to nearly double the number of subscribers this year.  (More ...)

IBM in talks to buy Sun Microsystems

By Ritsuko Ando and Anupreeta Das

NEW YORK (Reuters) - IBM is in talks to buy Sun Microsystems Inc, sources with knowledge of the matter said, a move that could bolster the technology giant against rivals in the high-end computer server market.

International Business Machines Corp is offering to pay at least $6.5 billion, or double Sun's Tuesday closing price of $4.97, The Wall Street Journal reported online earlier. Shares of Sun jumped 64 percent in pre-market trading to $8.16, while IBM shares fell 2 percent to $90.89.  (More ...)


ADVFN World Daily Markets Bulletin (excerpts)

US Stocks at a Glance

Dow And S&P 500 Falling To New Lows For The Session

Stocks are seeing considerable weakness in mid-morning trading on Wednesday, as traders cash in on the market's recent gains. The major averages are giving back some ground after ending the previous session at their best closing levels in almost a month.

The weakness in the markets is largely due to profit taking, with traders cashing in on the strong gains seen in recent sessions. However, selling pressure has remained relatively subdued, helping the major averages to hold onto the bulk of their recent gains.

Some traders may be staying on the sidelines ahead of the Federal Reserve's announcement of its latest decision on interest rates.

European Shares - Back to square one

Leading shares are mixed after a poor set of UK unemployment figures put the kibosh on an early attempt to continue yesterday’s rally.

The number of people out of work rose to 2.03m in the November - January quarter from 1.97m in the October to December period. A record 138,400 people signed on for job seeker’s allowance in February. This was well in excess of the 90,000 new claimants that had been expected and brings the total number of claimants to 1.39m.

Asia Markets - Markets advance on Wall Street's gains

The major markets across the Asia-Pacific region advanced for the fourth day in succession, led by financials. However, the rally seems to be losing steam, with profit taking in select stocks and a slump in metals generating some selling pressure. Except Australia, all the other markets in the region ended in the green.

Crude oil ended $0.71 down in Asian trading at $48.45 a barrel in electronic trading, after having closed at $49.16 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Tuesday. In the New York session, the commodity gained, $1.81 after hitting an intra-day low of $46.53 and a high of $49.82.

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