Diamonds and Dogs
Winter is coming so get your firewood ready. Plum Creek Timber (PCL), a supplier of wood products for housing and other projects is jumping 17% to new recent highs after agreeing to merge with Weyerhaeuser for $8.4 billion. Shareholders will have to approve the deal, but the merger would create the largest forest product company in the world with 13 million acres of timberland and a new headquarters in Seattle. Weyerhaeuser said it would repurchase $2.5 billion in stock after the deal closes. It also expects to maintain the same current annual dividend of $1.24 per common share, which is a 13% dividend increase compared to the one received by Plum Creek shareholders.
William Shatner is having a bad day. The pitchman for Priceline.com (PCLN) is watching his stock take a hit down 10% following disappointing earnings. The third quarter profits actually topped expectations, but along with the good news came the bad news. The company lowered their yearly earnings per share outlook to $11.10-$11.90 which is well below analyst estimates of $12.42. The US bookings are expected to fall by 5-10% compared to the same period a year ago. The weakness in the US is expected to be offset by International growth, but International growth is getting hit by currency fluctuations. If you want to travel, now might be the time to get better deals.