Tech Business Roundup: Facebook Goes Nasdaq, Microsoft Loses VA

One exchange loses Facebook (FB) as another one gains it. The company takes its shares off the NYSE and moves them to the Nasdaq (NASDAQ:NDAQ), as FB’s initial public offering is planned to be launched perhaps in May. Nasdaq moves higher on the news, which could become the biggest such event since Google in 2004.

Investing Insights: Nasdaq Won Over Facebook From the NYSE.

The Department of Veteran Affairs is making a move that will not only save it as much as $70 million a year, but will also help out the Department of Justice’s antitrust division. Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) 3-year licensing agreement with the VA which covered 300,000 employees, is being terminated (the savings part); and the agency’s chief information officer explained that the agreement cancellation was due to the impact of cloud services and mobile devices, remarking that the move will help “foster competition between vendors” (the antitrust part).

Research In Motion’s (NASDAQ:RIMM) BlackBerry keeps its status as the official smartphone in Washington, according to The Washington Post. In the national capital where “time stands still”, some half a million Federal workers will remain required by their employer to keep their BlackBerrys, the reason for which could be confidence in RIMM’s e-mail security, or perhaps the nature of the bureaucracy itself.

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AllianceBernstein discloses a 10.1 percent investment in lithium ion battery maker A123 Systems (NASDAQ:AONE), and shares pop accordingly. The stake, which is up from a previously reported 6.4 percent, is facilitated by amended 13G filing. All this represents a reversal of fortunes for A123, as share values had been cut by some 50 percent after last month’s battery recall and analyst downgrades that followed.

Two analyst laurels are good news for Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM). A “healthy” demand for smartphones last quarter, plus increasing chipset share for QCOM, was noted by Barclays. Multiple sources of potential growth were pointed out by Bernstein, such as the 4 gigabyte LTE wireless, and expansion of the tablet market to success of computers running Windows on ARM-based chips (NASDAQ:ARMH).

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To contact the reporter on this story: Mark Lawson at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com