Vodafone’s Indian Issues, Vivus Drug Hits Stores Early, and 3 More Hot Stocks

Vodafone Group (NASDAQ:VOD): Vodafone has offering 40 billion rupees, or about $680 million, to the Indian government to extend the carrier’s licenses in Delhi, Mumbai, and Kolkata, some of the most lucrative areas in the country. Due to expire in November of next year, the Indian government has already rejected one proposal to renew the permits, which Vodafone then challenged. The case is set to be heard on August 29th.

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Vivus (NASDAQ:VVUS): Vivus’ weight loss drug Qsymia has found its way to retail shelves two weeks early, and can now be bought at 8,000 Walgreens, Costco, and Duane Reade outlets, at least initially. With the product now on the shelves, Vivus can now focus more intently on its battle with investor Manhattan First, which is pushing hard for a complete replacement of Vivus’ board.

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BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY): Following last week’s disappointing results, downgrades from numerous firms – Morgan Stanley, Needham, Deutsche Bank, Societe Generale,  Macquarie, and Wells Fargo — haven’t helped the company’s shares rebound, as the weak quarter should have been one of the strongest yet. There is little hope for the future, as well. A heavy marketing spend “will create a heavy cash burn” unless sales pick up according to Deutsche Bank. ”While [BBM] drove sales in the emerging markets … the competitive landscape has become much more treacherous with alternative instant messaging services and low-priced Android devices flooding this market,” says Needham.

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iRobot Corporation (NASDAQ:IRBT): iRobot is launching a lawsuit in Germany, where it claims that products being sold in the nation, namely the Solac Ecogenic AA3400 robotic vacuum cleaning robot, infringe on its existing European patents. The Ecogenic apparently violates five of the company’s patents used in the company’s Roomba robot vacuum.

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Barrick Gold Corporation (NYSE:ABX): The latest delay to the company’s Pascua Lama mining project might have been the straw that broke the camel’s back  for some analysts, as the company is apparently taking a $4.5 billion-$5.5 billion charge in the second quarter. However, the company is alreadt so entrenched that it may not be able to, according to others. Once complete, the mine would produce 800,000-850,000 ounces per year at all-in sustaining costs of just $50-$200 per ounce. Additionally, Barrick has already spent about $5 billion on the project, ceasing of operations costs could top $1 billion, and it would have to pay out Silver Wheaton (NYSE:SLW), which owns rights to a part of the mine’s silver output, Seeking Alpha points out.

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