Wells Fargo ( WFC), which is No. 4 in assets, is expected by analysts on Friday to report first-quarter profit of 88 cents a share. The bank earned 75 cents a share in the year-earlier quarter. Profits have risen the last three quarters at Wells Fargo, including a gain of 24% in the fourth quarter. The Long-Term Case for Wells Fargo and U.S. Bancorp
J.C. Penney ( JCP) has hired bankers at Blackstone Group ( BX) for advice on how the struggling department-store chain can raise $1 billion in cash, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. One option could be to sell a minority stake in Penney, and the company has reached out to and heard from possible investors including private-equity firms, the people told the newspaper. The latest news follows the retailer's move on Monday to oust CEO Ron Johnson after 17 months on the job. J.C. Penney: A National Disgrace,
LinkedIn ( LNKD) agreed to pay about $90 million to acquire Pulse, which makes an e-reader platform used on mobile devices. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter. Pulse's e-reader applications are used by more than 30 million people worldwide.
Yahoo! ( YHOO) is expected soon to hire a new chief of Americas division from AOL ( AOL), a person familiar with the matter told the Journal. Ned Brody, who was the top advertising-sales executive at AOL, has resigned from the post to pursue "other opportunities," AOL said Thursday in a regulatory filing.
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