Wells Fargo Expects Q3 Home Loan Slump and 2 Other Hot Stocks to Watch

Wells Fargo & Co. (NYSE:WFC): Current price $41.45

Chief Financial Officer Tim Sloan said at a conference hosted by Barclays in New York on Monday that his company anticipates making 30 percent fewer home loans in the third quarter because of rising interest rates. Mortgage rates on the uptick are reducing profit for banks as demand for loans plummets. Wells Fargo projects that it will make $80 billion in home loans in the current quarter, versus the $112 billion it made in the previous period; if the prediction holds, it would represent the first quarter since mid-2011 that the bank did not make a minimum of $100 billion in home loans.

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Groupon Inc. (NASDAQ:GRPN): Current price $11.10

Groupon said Monday that it purchased the European last-minute travel application Blink, which is based in Spain. Blink works with more than 2,000 hotel partners in eight European countries, assisting them in managing their room inventories by offering same-day hotel bookings. Groupon said the addition of same-day bookings gives its Groupon Getaways business another manner in which to serve customers’ travel requirements, and that Blink complements its ongoing European travel offerings. Financials of the transaction were not divulged.

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Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc. (NYSE:POT): Current price $31.46

Shares of Potash Corp., Mosaic, and Intrepid Potash were all moving higher Monday after Forbes’s Russian edition reported that billionaire investor Suleiman Kerimov might divest his 22 percent interest in Uralkali, heralding a potential change of strategy at the world’s No. 1 producer. At the same time, the Russian billionaire Vladimir Evtushenkov, who is one of the potential buyers named in a Reuters story, denied having any interest in buying the stake to the publication.

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