Wall Street is in a cautious mood ahead of a big week of earnings and as U.S. Federal Reserve policymakers meet to discuss another potential rate hike. Stocks are lower across the board (^DJI, ^GSPC, ^IXIC), with energy shares leading the declines.
Tribune Publishing (TPUB) shares surged in early trading. Gannett (GCI) offered to buy the owner of the Los Angeles Times and The Chicago Tribune for about $815 million dollars in cash and debt. That translates to $12.25 a share. In a statement, the publisher of USA Today said it is seeking to expand the company's network to include more local markets and new platforms through the transaction. The deal represents a 63% premium based on Tribune's closing share price on Friday.
Halliburton (HAL) is delaying its full earnings release until the first week of May. The move comes as the company waits for the Baker Hughes (BHI) deal to close at the end of the month. However, Halliburton did report it was taking a $2.1 billion charge for the first quarter after cutting more than 6,000 jobs and taking a write-off.
Xerox (XRX) shares were sharply lower in early trading. The business services provider and copier company delivered earnings per share that came in a penny shy of estimates, while revenue topped expectations and sales fell more than 4% from a year ago due to a stronger dollar and weak demand for printers and copiers. Xerox plans to split into two separate companies by the end of the year.
Marriott International (MAR) shares are on investors' radar. Barron's reported over the weekend that shares of the hotel operator can rise 30% over the next 18 months with profit and revenue growth both heading in the right direction—thanks to the strong management team and the ample cost saving from the Starwood deal.
Ted Cruz and John Kasich team up to take on Trump
Ted Cruz and John Kasich are joining forces in a last-minute effort to stop Donald Trump from winning the Republican presidential nomination. Donald Trump is calling efforts by his opponents a sign of "desperation."
Saudi Arabia’s post oil-era plan
Saudi Arabia Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman unveiled a major post-oil era plan for the future of the kingdom’s economy. The "Vision 2030"plan includes raising money through an initial public offering of up to 5% of shares in state-owned oil giant Aramco, which is estimated to be worth more than $2 trillion.
Ex-Berkshire executive reappears as activist investor
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that David Sokol has resurfaced as an activist investor, pushing Middleburg Financial Corporation to put itself up for sale. David Sokol has kept a relatively low profile since leaving Berkshire (BRK-A) amid a stock-trading controversy.