Market Updates: American International Group (NYSE:AIG), MetLife (NYSE:MET), Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), Target (NYSE:TGT), Macy’s (NYSE:M)
To start of the news for today, a large sale was announced earlier to the markets. American International Group (NYSE:AIG) has agreed to sell it’s Alico division to MetLife, Inc. (NYSE:MET) for a reported $15.5 billion. This sale will involve $6.8 billion in cash and $8.7 billion in equity securities. This is coming after the March 1st announcement that the bailed-out AIG was selling it’s Asian operations to Prudentual PLC (LON:PRU) for $35.5 billion. American International Group investors have responded positively to the news, and at the time of writing the embattled giant’s stock had risen over 3%.
In international news, Brussels (Home to the European Commission) announced that it was readying to back a monetary fund for Greece. The Balkan country has had numerous problems recently with its debt level, and most early signs pointed towards the EU taking a hands-off approach. This reversal of position could be a show of good faith by the European body in light of the Greeks recent tax increases and spending cuts, which have caused riotous clashes between the notoriously leftist student population and the Greek police forces.
The monetary fund should be ready around June of this year, assuming Greece continues to refinance it’s more than 20 billion Euros debt through April and May. US investment bank Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) could be under investigation by the US Senate for it’s alleged role in helping Greece cover up these debt levels from European Regulators.
To end on a positive note, some large-store retailers surprised most everyone last Friday (5/5/10) when it was announced that their February sales were up more than earlier Wall Street estimates. Target (NYSE:TGT) reported sales were up in stores open at least one year by 2.4%, beating Wall St. estimates by 1.4%. Nordstrom (NYSE:JWN) reported that its February sales were up by over 10% in stores, and Macy’s (NYSE:M) beat projections by 2.4%, up a total of 3.7% last month.