April 07, 2011 11:53 ET

American Energy Report Issues Thursday Trading News on Citigroup, Sirius XM Radio, Intel, Microsoft, Ford and UnionTown Energy

Morning Update Features Citigroup (C), Sirius XM Radio (SIRI), Intel Corp. (INTC), Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), Ford (F) and UnionTown Energy Inc. (UTOG)

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA--(Marketwire - April 7, 2011) -

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Big Bank News: Citigroup Inc. (C) is expanding its commodity investment group to tap increasing opportunities. Over the next two years, the financial leader will enlarge the unit by a third. The company also intends to establish a commodity trading division in Shanghai to broaden it foothold in the Chinese market.

Technology News: Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) and Toyota Motor Corp. have partnered to plan and build in-car digital information services based on Microsoft's "cloud computing" platform. The two companies will invest 1 billion yen (about 12 million U.S. dollars) in Toyota Media Service, a Toyota subsidiary that offers digital information services to Toyota customers.

Intel has unveiled new server processors based on its 32nm technology. Called mission critical, the new Intel Xeon E7 processors have up to 10 cores with Intel Hyper-Threading Technology. Intel said the new processors offer up to 40 percent higher performance than the Intel Xeon 7500 series.

Gabelli & Co. analyst Brett Harriss upped his rating on Sirius XM (SIRI) this morning to Buy from Hold. He based the increase partly on the idea that Sirius has the ability to raise its prices. At the time of the July 2008 merger of Siriux and XM, the company agreed not to raise prices for its basic subscription until August 2011. August is less than six months away.

Energy News: Everybody's talking about shale oil and gas. Could it power America? Could America become an exporter to the world?

Shale Oil and Gas - the Best Kept Secret in the Energy Sector Is Going Viral

Fact is, U.S. oil and gas production is increasing for the first time in 40 years thanks to the unlocking of vast new reserves from shale deposits such as the Bakken and the Heath in America's west.

For American investors, it's a golden time to make a killing in a junior oil company because drilling activity is bound to increase and operations will be at home in the U.S., meaning less risk and better financial oversight.

Emerging oil developers, such as Montana-based UnionTown Energy (UTOG) are leading the charge into the country's shale fields. Yesterday, UnionTown completed its acquisition of the Musselshell oil and gas property, located in central Montana above a resource-rich formation known as the Heath. The U.S. government says the Heath is the country's largest oil field outside Alaska.

Musselshell has an estimated recoverable oil reserve of 10.4 million barrels. Another shale oil property UnionTown is negotiating to buy has an estimated recoverable reserve of 2.8 million barrels.

Previously, this bountiful supply of black gold was considered inaccessible, but new horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing techniques enable drillers to find it and bring it to the surface in large quantities.

Following yesterday's acquisition announcement, UnionTown saw it stock surge 14% in trading to close at $1.92 (from $0.87 on March 14, 2011, UTOG has seen a gain of over 100%).

Automotive News: Nancy Gioia, director of global electrification for Ford Motor Company (F) said rising gas prices are less likely to drive U.S. consumers into the arms of hybrids. "In the past, I would tell you that as fuel prices inched up over $3.50 (a gallon), you saw an increase in hybrid sales," observed Gioia. Now the upward tick in sales is modest, she said.

According to the Energy Department, fuel prices rose nearly 9 cents over the last week to $3.68 a gallon, the highest pump jump ever recorded for April.

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