Lam Research, KLA stocks slip after report says U.S. could restrict chip-equipment sales to China

Bed Bath & Beyond Sells Business To 1-800-FLOWERS.COM

Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY) announced Tuesday that it has agreed to sell its business to 1-800-FLOWERS.COM, Inc. (FLWS) for $252 million, subject to certain working capital and other adjustments.

This transaction is another important step towards simplifying Bed Bath & Beyond’s portfolio and deepening its focus on its core Home, Baby and Beauty businesses. It will also accelerate the company’s ongoing business transformation and its efforts to re-establish Bed Bath & Beyond’s authority in the Home space.

Following the closing of the transaction, will continue to provide product and personalization services to Bed Bath & Beyond and buybuy BABY. The transaction is expected to close during the Company’s fiscal 2020 first quarter.

The closing of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including, among others, the expiration or termination of the applicable waiting period under the Hart-Scott Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976.

U.N. Libya envoy says Tripoli port was attacked on Tuesday

GENEVA/TRIPOLI (Reuters) – The sea port in Libya’s capital Tripoli was attacked on Tuesday, U.N. Libya envoy Ghassan Salame said, without giving details.

A Reuters reporter in Tripoli, which eastern forces have been trying to take, could see heavy smoke billowing from the port area. A port source said a warehouse had been hit.

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Gold Prices Rise After Apple Warning

Gold prices edged higher on Tuesday to hover near a two-week high as fears grew over the coronavirus’s impact on the global economy and businesses.

Spot gold rose 0.4 percent to $1,587.58 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures were up 0.3 percent at $1,590.55.

Investor sentiment remains fragile after Apple Inc became the latest company to warn of trouble from the coronavirus outbreak, saying it would not meet its guidance for March-quarter revenue because of slower iPhone production.

The death toll from China’s coronavirus epidemic climbed to 1,868 as 98 more people died.

Health officials in China published the first details on nearly 45,000 cases of coronavirus infection, saying more than 80 percent cases have been mild and new ones seem to be falling since early this month.

Separately, the World Health Organization (WHO) said that – with a mortality rate of around 2 percent — COVID-19 was “less deadly” than other coronaviruses such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

However, global experts warn it is too early to say the outbreak is being contained.

Apple set to lose title of most valuable U.S. companies to Microsoft

With Apple Inc. shares AAPL, +0.02% falling 3.1% in premarket trading Tuesday, Microsoft Corp. MSFT, +0.89% is on track to take back the No. 1 position on the list of the U.S.’s most valuable companies by market capitalization. Microsoft’s stock is down 0.2% ahead of the open, which means the software giant is headed toward a market cap of $1.408 trillion at the open, while Apple is on track to open with a market cap of $1.378 trillion. The last time Microsoft closed as the most valuable company was Feb. 11 and Feb. 10, which ended a 67-session run with Apple at No. 1. The companies were still well ahead of third-place Inc. AMZN, -0.70%, which closed Friday with at market cap of $1.063 trillion, and fourth-place Alphabet Inc. GOOGL, +0.35% at $1.044 trillion.

Kosovo police officer commits suicide after killing parents, brothers

PRISTINA (Reuters) – A female police officer shot dead her parents and two brothers before committing suicide in the eastern Kosovo town of Gjilan where she served, police and the prosecutor’s office said on Tuesday.

“A police officer has killed four members of her family and in the end she committed suicide,” the prosecutor’s office in the town said in a statement, giving no further details about the incident. They named the officer only as V.B.

Police said doctors at the scene had confirmed the deaths.

NY Fed accepts $53.55 bln at overnight repo operation

Feb 18 (Reuters) – The New York Federal Reserve on Tuesday accepted all $53.55 billion in bids from primary dealers at an overnight repurchase agreement (repo) operation. For more details, see: here (Reporting By Karen Brettell)

Lam Research, KLA stocks slip after report says U.S. could restrict chip-equipment sales to China

Shares of chip-equipment companies Lam Research Corp. LRCX, -3.09% and KLA Corp. KLAC, -3.82% are off more than 3% in Tuesday morning trading after a Wall Street Journal report indicated that the Trump administration is considering restricting on semiconductor-equipment sales to China. The Commerce Department is weighing rule changes that would let the agency ask for licenses from any companies that wanted to use U.S. equipment to make chips for Huawei Technologies Co., according to the WSJ report. "This time around, the administration appears to be going after such [semiconductor capital-equipment] vendors like Applied Materials AMAT, -1.79%, KLA, Lam Research and Teradyne TER, -3.93% that sell equipment to the likes of Taiwan Semiconductor TER, -3.93%," wrote Susquehanna analyst Mehdi Hosseini. "TSM uses such equipment to make chips for the likes of Apple AAPL, -2.39% and Huawei. Perhaps the administration has realized they cannot restrict ASML ASML, -2.49%, the key enabling vendor!" Hosseini said that this potential development, along with the new coronavirus, represent near-term headwinds for chip-equipment companies.