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Buzz Stocks: Apple Inc. (AAPL), Alcoa, Boeing, and DISH Network

Today's hot stocks to watch in the news include AAPL, AA, BA, and DISH

by 1/9/2013 9:01 AM
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After two days of modest declines, U.S. stock futures are poised to open higher following the beginning of earnings season. In company news, here are some names to watch in today's session:

  • Earnings news: Corporate earnings season is underway, unofficially kicking off last night with results from Alcoa Inc. (NYSE:AA). The aluminum producer announced fourth-quarter earnings (excluding items) of 6 cents per share, well above last year's loss, and in line with analysts' expectations. Meanwhile, revenue took a 2% dip to $5.9 billion, but edged out the consensus view of $5.6 billion. AA also believes global aluminum demand will rise to 7% in 2013 from 6% in 2012. (CNBC); Apollo Group Inc (NASDAQ:APOL) said its first-quarter net income fell 11%, thanks to another drop in enrollment at the University of Phoenix. After items, earnings came in at $1.22 per share on $1.06 billion in revenue, besting Wall Street's projections for earnings of 90 cents per share on $1.03 billion in revenue. (NBCNews)

  • Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is working on one way to make its popular iPhone even more desirable -- reduce the price tag. In order to lower production costs, AAPL may house the device in a different shell (less-expensive plastic versus aluminum) or recycle parts from older models. The plan is not yet set in stone, however, and the company has yet to officially comment on the initiative. (The Wall Street Journal)

  • Speaking of lower prices, Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) -- together with its manufacturing partners -- is introducing a line of less expensive Ultrabooks that may better compete with tablets on the market. The new line starts around $800 and features longer battery life and added security measures. Later this year, INTC hopes to introduce additional systems priced in the $600 neighborhood. (CNBC)

  • The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA) is suffering some harsh scrutiny after two consecutive days of trouble for its much-hyped 787 Dreamliner. Just yesterday, a 787 bound for Tokyo had to return to Boston because of a fuel leak. And on Monday, a battery in another aircraft caught fire while sitting on a runway. The Boeing 787 Dreamliner has been coveted for its fuel- and cost-efficient design, but these recent events are not without precedence. In December, United Airlines and Qatar Airways had to ground multiple planes because of electronic problems, and even before the 787s were available for flight, BA experienced several preproduction delays. (USA Today)

  • Another suitor is seeking the attention of Clearwire Corporation (NASDAQ:CLWR), as DISH Network Corp. (NASDAQ:DISH) swooped in Tuesday night with an unsolicited buyout offer of $3.30 per share, well above the existing $2.97-per-share deal with Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE:S). Sprint was quick to defend its existing offer (which had already been approved by Clearwire board), noting its rival's higher bid is "highly conditional" and would require S to waive its shareholder rights, which it is unwilling to do. CLWR shares are up nearly 8% in pre-market action. (The Kansas City Star)

  • Finally, the competition for landing the now-bankrupt Hostess Brands is about to get a little more intense. Apollo Global Management LLC (NYSE:APO) is teaming up with food exec C. Dean Metropoulos to construct a bid for the iconic snack-foods maker, targeting at least 16 of its 36 plants. This isn't the first time APO has worked with Metropoulos. Though their other ventures did not pan out, the pair recently considered vying for Morningstar Food and Sara Lee. (New York Post)

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