S&P Ordered to Pay Damages and 4 Hot Stocks Demanding Attention

Though Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) is a publicly traded company, it has a tradition of appointing employees to the status of so-called “partners” whose compensation comes out of a special pool. According to a report in Bloomberg, the firm is to announce its new class of partners next week, and currently has 407 members, down 31 during the last nine months.

In what could be a major blow to ratings agencies, an Australian judge has held S&P (NYSE:MHP) liable to pay damages to certain municipalities for the losses suffered by them because the rating agency had been “misleading and deceptive” in its AAA rating assigned to securities issued by ABN Amro known as CPDOs, which lost most of their value during the financial crisis.

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Berkshire Hathaway’s (NYSE:BRKB) cash arsenal rose to $47.8 billion in the quarter ended September 30, exciting fresh speculation about possible acquisitions that could invite the attention of Warren Buffett. It’s well known that he’s looking for multi-billion acquisitions that have a durable competitive advantage and are available at a price that gives him a margin of safety in his investment. In a letter to shareholders February last year, Buffett said “our elephant gun has been reloaded, and my trigger finger is itchy.”

Humana (NYSE:HUM) reports third quarter EPS of $2.62 which beats by $0.57 and revenue of $9.65 billion which misses by $200 million.

Third quarter EPS of $1.79 at IntercontinentalExchange (NYSE:ICE) beats by $0.07 while revenue of $323.2 million is in-line.

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