Barclays Announces Restructuring and 4 Hot Stocks to Watch

Barclays plc (NYSE:BCS) is the latest bank to announce a restructuring to cut costs and may eliminate about 2,000 positions in its investment banking operations. Banks across the world are trimming investment banking businesses that are struggling in the face of weak economic conditions and tight, new regulations that make it harder to earn profits. A report in the Wall Street Journal says major banks have announced plans to cut over 20,000 jobs in recent weeks.

A report in the Financial Times says data provider Thomson Reuters (NYSE:TRI), after being assured by the Bank of England and UK regulator, the FSA, that it was not under investigation for the LIBOR manipulation, will bid to operate the revamped system for administration of LIBOR. Main competitor Bloomberg is also in the bidding. The FSA has proposed that the LIBOR system be run privately and that suitable linkages the established between the reporting by banks and the transactions on the markets.

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Troubled market maker Knight Capital Group Inc (NYSE:KCG) is likely to take a final decision on the bids received from Getco LLC and Virtu Financial LLC. These bids are to be given a final shape by the end of this week for consideration by Knight Capital’s board and investors. Getco has reportedly offered between $1.4 billion-$1.8 billion through a cash and stock deal, while Virtu has made an all-cash proposal that values Knight between $1.5 billion-$1.6 billion.

International Paper (NYSE:IP) sells its Temple-Inland Building Products Division to Georgia-Pacific LLC for $750 million in cash, subject to adjustments. Located across eight states, the 16 facilities comprised in the deal include five solid wood mills, four particleboard plants, two medium-density fiberboard plants, one fiberboard plant and four gypsum wallboard plants. The transaction is likely to complete in the first quarter of 2013 and International Paper will use the sale proceeds for reducing its debt.

Oracle Corp (NASDAQ:ORCL) announces its agreement to acquire DataRaker, a provider of a cloud-based analytics platform that is able to process huge quantities of data gathered by electric, gas and water utilities through smart meters and deliver insights that could be used for dramatically improving the performance of the organization.

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