Stocks in the News: BP, Campbell Soup, AIG


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

BP (BP) will try to plug the gushing underwater oil in the Gulf of Mexico by pumping heavy drilling fluids into the damaged well in the next few days. The operation isn't a guaranteed success, BP said. The total cost to BP of the disaster to date has reached about $760 million, or $22 million a day, compared with initial estimates of $6 million a day last month. The Federal government, however, still questions BP's ability to plug the leak. Meanwhile, the oil has seeped 12 miles into Louisiana's fragile marshes, making it tougher to clean up and to rescue wildlife, like the brown pelican. BP's stock price fell 3.5% ahead of the bell.

Campbell Soup (CPB) said Monday its fiscal third-quarter profit declined to $168 million, or 49 cents a share, from $174 million, or 49 cents a share, in the year-ago period. On an adjusted basis, the company said it earned 54 cents a share, over estimates of analysts polled by FactSet Research of 51 cents a share. Sales rose 7% to $1.8 billion.

IBM (IBM) announced Monday it is buying AT&T's (T) Sterling Commerce unit, which makes business software, for $1.4 billion in cash.

Marriott International (MAR) said Monday it plans to double the number of hotels it runs in China in about five years.

American International Group (AIG) -- The Justice Department has decided not to file criminal charges against the former head of a division at AIG that dealt in mortgage-related securities, according to lawyers involved in the cases. With that, it appears there will be no criminal charges against AIG, although an SEC probe could still lead to a civil securities fraud case.

Google's (GOOG) war with Apple (AAPL) keeps intensifying by the day, reports Sam Gustin, to the benefit of consumers. Emails from Apple CEO Steve Jobs, confirming his full confidence in the company's front-line success, circulated in the blogosphere over the weekend.

Equity One (EQY) said on Sunday it would buy Capital Shopping Centres Group's U.S. unit in a $258.3 million deal, helping the U.S. shopping center owner expand into California.

Cell Therapeutics (CTIC) said Monday it has agreed to sell stock and warrants to a group of three institutional investors for up to $34.1 million. Shares sank over 13% in premarket trading.

Still due to report Monday are Borders Group (BGP) and Phillips-Van Heusen (PVH).