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2013 Predictions: Twitter's IPO, Apple's Evolution, Europe's Implosion and Obama's Big Year (Update 1)

Rocco Pendola, TheStreet's Director of Social Media:

" News Corp. (NWSA - Get Report) moves to take 100% control of YES (Yankees Entertainment and Sports) and makes a bid -- possibly a hostile one -- for Madison Square Garden (MSG). Make no mistake: Rupert Murdoch knows owning sports across platforms is crucial to building a 21st-century media empire."

"Mark Pincus steps down as CEO at Zynga (ZNGA) to focus on strategy."

" Netflix (NFLX), constrained by on- and off-balance sheet obligations, raises cash in 2013 by going to Wall Street for some sort of secondary, selling its DVD division, introducing e-commerce partnerships and/or platforms and/or increasing its $7.99/month streaming subscription rate. The stock tanks on the news. In the long run, however, Netflix benefits -- increased revenue from higher fees offsets impact of churn."

"Mobile payments pioneer Square files to go public in 2013; IPO hits in late 2013/2014 or it gets taken out by a big, somewhat unsuspected, player such as Starbucks (SBUX)."



Phil van Doorn, TheStreet's Bank Analyst, expects 2013 to be another fruitful year for the nation's largest banks.

"This has been a recovery year, with the KBW Bank Index (I:BKX) rising 25% through Friday's close, after falling 25% in 2011. Bank of America (BAC) is up 91%, but the shares still haven't made up what they lost the previous year."

"While the fiscal cliff could cause a brief hiccup and the Federal Reserve's continue stimulus will pressure net interest margins, the next round of bank stress tests by the Fed will spur another major return of capital to investors, with much higher dividend payouts and new share-buyback programs for strongly capitalized Bank of America and Citigroup (C). JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Wells Fargo (WFC) already feature attractive dividend yields, but will also raise dividends and repurchase significant amounts of shares, driving up earnings estimates."

The "big four" will see continued improvement on the credit front, with Bank of America set to benefit the most from the release of loan-loss reserves. The pressure on margins will be offset by gains on the quick sale of new mortgage loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as the refinancing wave continues. Most of the largest banks will continue to make significant cuts in expenses, which will unfortunately mean thousands of additional layoffs.

The much-maligned Bank of America and Citigroup each still trade for just 0.7 times tangible book value, and have plenty of upside for 2013.

-- Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

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