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Friday, October 24, 2014

Ex-Bank of New York Mellon employee pleads guilty to insider trading, (NYSE: MRK)

A former Bank of New York Mellon Corp employee on Friday pleaded guilty to insider trading based on tips from a former Merck & Co Inc employee about potential pharmaceutical mergers.Federal prosecutors in New York said David Post, 41, a product manager at the bank, received nonpublic information from a former Rutgers Business School classmate about three companies: Idenix Pharmaceuticals, Ardea BioSciences and ViroPharma Inc.Prosecutors did not name the classmate, but on Oct. 14 they charged Zachary Zwerko, a former senior finance analyst with Merck, with passing inside tips about the same three stocks to a Rutgers classmate who worked at a bank.The connection was confirmed when the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday amended a parallel civil complaint against Zwerko to include Post as a defendant.

Merck & Co., Inc. (Merck), is a global health care company that delivers health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products, which it markets directly and through its joint ventures. Shares of MRK traded higher by 1.73% or $0.98/share to $57.61. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $44.62 and as high as $61.33. On average, 9588070 shares of MRK exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 8554603.



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Ford rejects push for investment in Ontario plants -union, (NYSE: F), (NASDAQ: FINL)

Ford Motor Co has rejected a pitch to make a new investment in its Windsor, Ontario, plants and decided to put the money in Mexico as the company originally planned, the head of Canada's main auto workers' union said on Friday.Unifor President Jerry Dias called the decision a significant blow, saying the program would have stabilized the Windsor operation for a decade, bringing a new engine program to the facilities."This was a project that was earmarked for Mexico and we tried to have it diverted to Canada," he told Reuters. "We were close, but just couldn't get it over the finish line."In a release, Unifor said the program would have created 1,000 new jobs in Windsor, a Canadian auto manufacturing hub located just across the border from Detroit. The Globe and Mail reported on Friday that the investment could have been about C$2 billion ($1.8 billion).

Ford Motor Company (Ford) is a producer of automobiles. Shares of F fell by 4.31% or $-0.62/share to $13.78. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $13.26 and as high as $18.12. On average, 29504200 shares of F exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 91597096.

The Finish Line, Inc. together with its subsidiaries, is a mall-based specialty retailers in the United States, and operates two retail divisions under the Finish Line brand name (Finish Line) and Running Specialty Group (Running Specialty). Shares of FINL traded higher by 0.24% or $0.06/share to $25.36. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $22.99 and as high as $31.90. On average, 870545 shares of FINL exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 676111.



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Well-timed bullish option bets seen in Digital River weeks before deal, (NASDAQ: DRIV)

Well-timed bullish options bets on Digital River Inc were placed about two weeks before the e-commerce services company said on Friday it would be taken private. Digital River's stock rose 48 percent to $25.75 on Friday, a day after the Minnesota-based company said it entered into an agreement to be bought by an investor group led by Siris Capital Group LLC for $26 a shares.A fortnight before the deal was announced there was a sudden spike in options activity with nearly 28,000 calls traded between Oct. 6 and Oct. 13, according to options analytics firm Trade Alert data.The average daily volume on Digital River from the beginning of the year till Oct. 6 was 36 calls, according to Trade Alert.A lot of the call activity during these six days was in calls at the $18 strike set to expire on Nov. 22.

Digital River, Inc. (Digital River) provides end-to-end global cloud-commerce, payments and marketing solutions to a wide variety of companies in software, consumer electronics, computer games, video games and other markets. Shares of DRIV traded higher by 46.84% or $8.14/share to $25.52. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $13.61 and as high as $19.67. On average, 231483 shares of DRIV exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 6795121.



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Ex-Bank of New York Mellon trader pleads guilty to insider trading, (NYSE: MRK)

A former Bank of New York Mellon Corp trader on Friday pleaded guilty to insider trading based on tips from a former Merck & Co Inc employee about potential pharmaceutical mergers. Federal prosecutors in New York said David Post, 41, a product manager at the bank, received nonpublic information from a former Rutgers Business School classmate about three companies: Idenix Pharmaceuticals, Ardea BioSciences and ViroPharma Inc.Prosecutors did not name the classmate, but on Oct. 14 they charged Zachary Zwerko, a former senior finance analyst with Merck, with passing inside tips about the same three stocks to a Rutgers classmate who worked at a bank.The connection was confirmed when the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday amended a parallel civil complaint against Zwerko to include Post as a defendant.According to criminal and civil court filings, Zwerko passed information to Post about Merck's acquisition of Idenix as well as Ardea and ViroPharma, which Zwerko learned were potential acquisition targets.

Merck & Co., Inc. (Merck), is a global health care company that delivers health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products, which it markets directly and through its joint ventures. Shares of MRK traded higher by 0.79% or $0.45/share to $57.08. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $44.62 and as high as $61.33. On average, 9588070 shares of MRK exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 3848115.



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Ford rejects push for investment in Ontario plants -union, (NYSE: F), (NASDAQ: FINL)

Ford Motor Co has rejected a pitch to make a new investment in its Windsor, Ontario, plants and decided to put the money in Mexico as the company originally planned, the head of Canada's main auto workers' union said on Friday.Unifor President Jerry Dias called the decision a significant blow, saying the program would have stabilized the Windsor operation for a decade, bringing a new engine program to the facilities."This was a project that was earmarked for Mexico and we tried to have it diverted to Canada," he told Reuters. "We were close but just couldn't get it over the finish line."In a release, Unifor said the program would have created 1,000 new jobs in Windsor, one of Canada's auto manufacturing hubs, located just across the border from Detroit. The Globe and Mail reported on Friday that the investment could have been about C$2 billion ($1.8 billion).

Ford Motor Company (Ford) is a producer of automobiles. Shares of F fell by 4.24% or $-0.61/share to $13.79. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $13.26 and as high as $18.12. On average, 29504200 shares of F exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 49496528.

The Finish Line, Inc. together with its subsidiaries, is a mall-based specialty retailers in the United States, and operates two retail divisions under the Finish Line brand name (Finish Line) and Running Specialty Group (Running Specialty). Shares of FINL fell by 0.71% or $-0.18/share to $25.12. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $22.99 and as high as $31.90. On average, 870545 shares of FINL exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 391111.



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P&G to exit Duracell battery business; quarterly sales dip, (NYSE: PG)

Procter & Gamble Co on Friday said it would sell its Duracell battery business, probably through a split-off into a separate company, as it looks to focus on faster-growing brands.P&G shares rose 3 percent as investors shrugged off a marginal fall in quarterly sales and warning that a stronger dollar would significantly hurt revenue and earnings this quarter.The world's No. 1 household products maker said in August it could sell about half of its slow-growing brands in the next two years. Duracell, the world's No. 1 battery business, was widely considered to be one of the largest assets that P&G was likely to divest.On a conference call, Chief Financial Officer John Moeller said the company had sold or discontinued 11 brands in the latest quarter and 25 in the last five quarters. Analysts expect it to sell laundry brands Fab and Trojan, Perma Sharp shaving blades and Fekkai hair products, among others.

The Procter & Gamble Company (P&G) is focused on providing consumer packaged goods. Shares of PG traded higher by 2.56% or $2.13/share to $85.36. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $75.26 and as high as $85.82. On average, 7974580 shares of PG exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 7990033.



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