Oct. 22 - Summary of business headlines: Yahoo beats in new CEO's first earnings report; Texas Instruments dented by weak chip demand; Caterpillar lowers 2012 forecast, again; Ancestry.com finds a new parent; Stocks end two-day slide. Conway G. Gittens reports.
Wall Street narrowly averts a Monday sell-off after Friday's dizzying drop, but it wasn't easy as yet another multi-national company sounds the economic alarm. The tech-heavy Nasdaq led the modest rally, snapping a steep two-day losing streak. Yahoo investors were rewarded after the close. The struggling internet company announced better-than-expected third quarter profits and a slight bump up in net sales was enough to top Wall Street forecasts. A promising sign for Marissa Mayer's first three-months on the job as CEO, who sources say is looking to take Yahoo back to its technology roots. Shares of Yahoo, though, were down ever so slightly ahead of the results. Texas Instruments beat lowered expectations but sales are down and are expected to remain weak in the coming quarter. Caterpillar threw dirt on hopes of an economic pick-up. The heavy-duty equipment maker slashed its full-year forecast for the second time this year, citing a global economy that was growing slower than previously thought. Third-quarter revenues were not as strong as hoped but earnings, excluding items, came in ahead of expectations. Investors overlooked the outlook; focusing instead on the quarterly results. Outside of earnings, Ancestry.com was a mover of a different kind. The website is being bought by a European-based private equity firm for $1.6 billion. That stock saw a roughly 8 percent bounce on the news. In Europe, stocks fell as worries about the global economy weighed on investor sentiment.