Stocks in the News: Devon, BP, Citigroup


The following is a round-up of news likely to affect stock prices today:

Devon Energy (DVN) sold its Brazil, Gulf of Mexico and Azerbaijan assets to BP (BP) for $7 billion and bought a 50% stake of a BP oil sands project in Canada for $500 million. DVN shares jumped 2.3% in premarket trading.

Citigroup's (C) CEO Vikram Pandit is set to forecast returns of 1.25% a year or more on the bank's main assets within a few years, the Financial Times reported Wednesday, and earnings of as much as $20 billion from its core business within a few years.

HSBC (HBC) said Thursday information on 24,000 customers with Swiss accounts has been stolen by a former IT employee of its Swiss subsidiary, potentially exposing large numbers of international clients to prosecution by tax authorities in their home countries.

Smithfield Foods (SFD) returned to a profit of $37.3 million, or 22 cents per share, in the third quarter, partly due to strength in its packaged meats business and higher sales overseas, even as revenue dropped 14% to $2.88 billion.

AstraZeneca (AZN) announced a supply partnership with India's Torrent Pharmaceuticals on Thursday, as it seeks to boost its presence in emerging markets to counter patent losses on blockbuster drugs. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Men's Wearhouse (MW) reported late Wednesday a fourth-quarter loss of 11 cents a share excluding one-time charges. The loss was smaller than analysts had expected, even as sales fell more than expected. The outlook, however, beat expectations. Shares dropped over 6% ahead of the bell.

Gymboree (GYMB) said late Wednesday its fourth-quarter profit rose to $33.2 million, or $1.11 a share, on a 4% sales rise to $300 million. Results beat consensus by a penny. Guidance also beat estimates. Shares jumped nearly 5.5% in premarket trading.

Hot Topic (HOTT) said late Wednesday its fourth-quarter net income fell to $8 million, or 18 cents a share, as revenue also slid to $214.2. Results were inline with estimates.

United Technologies (UTX) said its board authorized buying back up to 60 million shares of the company's common stock.

Exxon Mobil (XOM) will be holding its annual meeting. Exxon may outline its capital spending and stock buyback plan, analysts say.

Visa (V) is also holding its first investor day presentation on Thursday. Analysts believe it could help lift the stock, as executives discuss long-term growth prospects as well as short-term trends.

Originally published