Market Minute: Apple Tops Coke as Biggest Brand; BP Back in Court


There's a new king in a closely watched brand marketing survey, and the Gulf oil spill is back in the spotlight. These stories and more are in Monday's Market Minute.

The Dow Industrials (^DJI) and the S&P 500 (^GPSC) both fell by more than one percent last week, but the Nasdaq (^IXIC) edged slightly higher.

The major averages are set to sell-off this morning as the market braces for a government shutdown.

APTOPIX Hong Kong Apple Store Opening
AP Photo/Kin Cheung

Apple (AAPL) has toppled Coca-Cola (KO) as the world's most valuable brand. This is the first time in the Interbrand survey's 13-year history that Coke has not been number one. It fell to third, with Google (GOOG) sliding into the second spot.

BP is back in court today for the start of the second phase of a three-part trial to determine responsibility for the gigantic Gulf of Mexico oil spill three years ago. The company is trying to limit the amount of damages it might have to pay. Fines could total as much as 18-billion dollars. BP has already paid out more than 42-billion in clean-up, compensation and fines.

Meanwhile, Royal Dutch Shell plans to sell its stake in a major oil project in Texas. It says the Texas project has not live up to expectations.
IBM (IBM) agreed late Friday to settle federal charges that it discriminated against Americans in some of its hiring practices. The company's online job listings expressed a preference for software developers who had student visas or H-1B visas. IBM will pay a small fine and revise its hiring process.

We continue to watch shares of J.C. Penney (JCP), which plunged 30 percent last week. The retailer issued 84-million shares, diluting the value of its current stock, and analysts warned that sales growth remains sluggish.

And, the online entertainment company best known for its Candy Crush game, has filed to go public in the U.S. The British company says it has 30-billion games played globally each month. The filing reportedly values King at about 5-billion dollars.

-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.