"A man comes to measure his greatness by the regrets, envies and hatreds of his competitors." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Morning News of Note:
- WPTE: $700M ANTED IN POKER DEAL BIG PLAY. Poker icon Doyle Brunson may be playing for the biggest pot of his life: the entire World Poker Tour. Brunson, 71, said yesterday he and a team of financial backers have launched a $700 million cash offer to purchase WPT Enterprises, which owns the popular World Poker Tour. The unsolicited bid is a 100 percent premium over WPT's close yesterday at $17.75 (Full Story) NY Post
- June Payrolls: U.S. Payrolls Rose by 146,000 in June, Survey Says U.S. employers added 146,000 workers to their payrolls in June, nearly twice as many as a month earlier, suggesting companies expect demand to hold up in the face of rising energy prices, economists said. The forecast compares with 78,000 jobs added in May and an average monthly gain of about 180,000 this year. (Full Story) Bloomberg
- CHCI: Comstock Homebuilding reports 98% growth in Q2 new order revenue (25.50 +1.30) Co says that the continued strength of its core market of the Greater Washington, DC area combined with its aggressive growth efforts since its IPO in December 2004 have resulted in a more than doubling of new orders in Q2. Backlog revenue is $268.6 mln vs $60.4 mln on the same date last year. Co says "These results are leading indicators that suggest to us we are solidly on track to achieve our new order revenue goals for the full year 2005."
- GOOG: Google to release Firefox toolbar - CNET (295.54 ) According to CNET, Google (GOOG) is poised to release a version of its toolbar for the Firefox browser, according to information sent to developers of an open-source toolbar alternative. Although Google's toolbar has been available for Internet Explorer for more than 4 years, this is the first version to appear for users of the Firefox browser, developed by the Mozilla Foundation.
- SEBL: Siebel Systems guides Q2 revs below consensus (8.80 -0.17) -Update- Co expects Q2 (Jun) revenue of $312-$314 mln vs Reuters consensus of $318.5 mln. Co expects license revenues of $78 mln and maintenance revenues of $123 mln. Services and Other revenues are expected to be $111-$113 mln. On April 27, co guided to license revs of $90-100 mln; maintenance revs of $121-123 mln; service & other revs of $100-105 mln
Market Comments: The non-farm payrolls coming in at +146,000 was not bad. While it was below consensus, it still supports the notion of moderate growth. We don't want the number to be too strong, because that might keep the Fed's foot on the brakes longer. We want signs that growth is moderating so that the Fed decides to take a pause.
The market had a strong showing yesterday, and is building on those gains in early trading. The SPX is flirting with the 1200 level, oscillating above and below it. This week's high was 1206, so a close above that level would likely embolden the bulls.