Monday, April 09, 2007


The WSJ reports that a probe by the DoJ into past money transfers at ABN Amro (ABN) looms as a hurdle to signing a deal to sell the Dutch bank to Barclays (BCS). ABN is working toward trying to reach a settlement with the DoJ but is facing time pressure: Barclays wants greater reassurance that the matter can be resolved before signing a deal to buy ABN for an estd $80bn within the next 2 weeks. Barclays doesn't want to inherit the risk of a criminal probe.

According to the WSJ, Yahoo (YHOO), Sandisk (SNDK) and Zing Systems have teamed up to launch an MP3 player that can download music wirelessly, in the latest attempt to take on Apple's iPod. A new wireless MP3 player called the Sansa Connect hit store shelves on Fri. The $250 device, crafted to work closely with Yahoo's Internet music and other online services, has a novel twist: It's designed to download music from the Internet wirelessly when the user isn't necessarily near a PC and wants to get fresh batches of songs.

“Heard on the Street” column out saying that investors who want to parlay Citigroup’s (C) long-awaited restructuring into profits might be better off on the sidelines this week when the co announces thousands of job cuts and other spending crackdowns. That is b/c the plan, likely to be announced Wed by Chmn and CEO Charles Prince, won't shed much light on the bank's fortunes as it grapples with a slew of tough issues weighing on financial institutions around the country. In a report issued Thu, Lehman Brothers analyst Jason Goldberg pegged Citigroup's rev per employee at $270K compared with $362K at its banking peers. To match its peers on that metric, Citigroup would have to cut 80K jobs, estd Mr. Goldberg. "While we don't expect it to go that far, we do believe cuts could run deeper than expectations," he wrote.

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