Starbucks Reveals Expansion Plans and 4 Hot Stocks Seeing Action

Martha Stewart Omnimedia (NYSE:MSO) will restructure its operations with a greater focus on digital and video media. The publishing business will take a back seat as the Whole Living magazine may be sold and Everyday Food made online. The moves are likely to save costs of about $35 million annually, and may also entail job cuts.

The company is firing on all cylinders, says Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) CEO Howard Schultz on an interview, revealing the coffee chain’s expansion plans. Expects 70-80% growth to come from outside of North America, and mainly from Asia. Next year could see close to 1200 new stores, with about 2000 outlets getting remodeled. Store count could touch the 1000 mark in China by the end of 2013.

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Coach’s (NYSE:COH) comprehensive anti-counterfeiting litigation campaign, Operation Turnlock, seems to be yielding results. The company won a $257 million default judgment against various individuals and businesses that allegedly ran websites selling fake Coach products.

According to a report in Reuters, Standard Chartered (SCBFF.PK) is negotiating to arrive at a joint settlement with the Manhattan District Attorney, the U.S. Treasury Department, the New York Federal Reserve and the Justice Department that may involve a fine in the range of $300 million as a result of investigations into the bank’s transactions with Iran. This is in addition to the August settlement of $340 million which the bank agreed with the N.Y. Department of Financial Services.

Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRKB) acquires privately held Oriental Trading, a seller of crafts and teacher supplies, wedding favors, holiday decorations and toys, for about $500 million, according to a report in the WSJ. About a third of Oriental’s stock is held by P-E firm KKR, which obtained the shares in exchange for its debt during bankruptcy restructuring.

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