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September 23, 2015
15:27 EDTAAPLAlibaba unveils low-priced, payments-focused smartwatch, VentureBeat reports
Alibaba (BABA) has unveiled Pay Watch, a smartwatch to be priced at $160 and lower that supports mobile payments through the company's Alipay platform, said VentureBeat, which notes that there is still no official English-language announcement on the device. Some health features are also being advertised and comparisons to Apple's (AAPL) Watch "seem inevitable," though "certainly not on price," the blog added. Reference Link
14:52 EDTDDAIF, VLKAYNavistar slides after VW scandal makes potential takeover unlikely
Shares of truck maker Navistar (NAV) have been under pressure since the start of the Volkswagen (VLKAY) emissions probe. WHAT'S NOTABLE: Navistar, which is based in the U.S., has long been seen as a possible target of Volkswagen. Navistar would give Volkswagen a footing in the U.S commercial truck market and allow it to better compete with Daimler (DDAIF) and Volvo (VOLVY) in that sector. On March 5, shares of Navistar jumped after The Deal's senior transportation writer Lou Whiteman wrote that the company could become a target for Volkswagen, Daimler or PACCAR (PCAR). Earlier today, Dow Jones wrote that Volkswagen's growing scandal over diesel engine emissions will likely distract the German automaker's interest in Navistar. PRICE ACTION: Since September 18, when the EPA first announced it was issuing a notice of violation to Volkswagen, shares of Navistar are down approximately 19%. Navistar is at a 52-week low, down over 8% to $13.70 in afternoon trading.
14:14 EDTVLKAY, DDAIFVolkswagen shares jump as CEO Winterkorn departs
Shares of Volkswagen (VLKAY) trading in New York have jumped following the resignation of Chief Executive Officer Martin Winterkorn, with the company's supervisory board subsequently praising the decision and saying it will consider his replacement at a meeting Friday. Prior to the news, several analysts made their own arguments regarding the stock, appearing quite bearish but saying long-term value still remains for Volkswagen even as it grapples with what could be years of fallout from its recent emissions failure. ANALYST OPINION: Several research firms weighed in on Volkswagen's ongoing emissions scandal this morning prior to Winterkorn announcing his resignation as CEO. Credit Suisse analyst Dan Galves commented more broadly that the events surrounding the emissions violations "will likely impact all OEM's that sell vehicles in Europe," explaining that European air pollution tests are "very misleading" and feature notable loopholes. The Volkswagen scandal could accelerate stricter testing standards, resulting in higher compliance costs for automakers as well as weakened appeal for diesel engines, according to Galves. Autoparts suppliers with exposure to diesel vehicles like BorgWarner (BWA) and Delphi (DLPH) may see a "modest drag" if consumer sentiment shifts, though Magna (MGA) could benefit from increased compliance spending, added the analyst. Meanwhile, JPMorgan's Jose Asumendi downgraded Volkswagen to Neutral from Overweight. The analyst noted that the North American engine recall is not his primary worry, but rather the company's European exposure, especially given the potential for additional investigations and the lack of clarity on the company's total liability. Separately, Deutsche Bank analyst Tim Rokossa downgraded the stock to Hold and cut his price target to EUR130 from EUR260. Though the stock's recent slip may look like a buying opportunity, the complete impact of the scandal will likely take "much longer" to unfold, stressed Rokossa. Beyond "very painful" legal fees, the scandal's impact on Volkswagen operations is the more key concern as damage to the Volkswagen and Audi brands pressures pricing, argued Rokossa. Volkswagen was also downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Nataxis this morning. In addition to the downgrades, Fitch Ratings placed Volkswagen's ratings, including its 'A' Long-term Issuer Default Rating, on Rating Watch Negative, reflecting "the reputational damage" on the group's brands the emission test scandal and the expected multi-billion euros financial impact from potential fines, recall costs, lawsuits and legal claims. CEO EXIT: Martin Winterkorn stepped down as CEO of Volkswagen on Wednesday as the company's emissions scandal continued to unfold. The former Chief Executive stated, "I am stunned that misconduct on such a scale was possible in the Volkswagen Group. As CEO I accept responsibility for the irregularities that have been found in diesel engines and have therefore requested the supervisory board to agree on terminating my function as CEO... I am doing this in the interests of the company even though I am not aware of any wrong doing on my part...The process of clarification and transparency must continue. This is the only way to win back trust." Winterkorn's announcement was quickly followed by a statement from the supervisory board itself, saying its executive committee "recognizes not only the economic damage caused, but also the loss of trust among many customers worldwide." The executive committee explained that recommendations for new personnel will be presented at an upcoming board meeting this Friday, but cautioned that it is expecting "further personnel consequences in the next days" as its internal investigations continue "at a high tempo." Importantly, the board also stated that it will voluntarily submit a complaint to the State Prosecutors' office in Brunswick, remarking that "criminal proceedings may be relevant." Possible replacements for Winterkorn include Matthias Mueller, head of the Porsche brand who has the support of the family that controls a majority stake of VW, and Herbert Diess, who recently joined from BMW (BAMXY), said Bloomberg, citing a person familiar with the matter. PRICE ACTION: Shares of Volkswagen trading in New York have advanced 8.3% to $27.55 in afternoon trading following Winterkorn's departure, though the company's American Depository Receipts have crashed nearly 28% since the emissions failure became public. Fellow German automakers BMW and Daimler (DDAIF) have also suffered double digit percentage declines in their New York listed shares since news of the scandal.
12:27 EDTVLKAYOn The Fly: Top stock stories at midday
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11:36 EDTTSLAStocks with call strike movement; BABA TSLA
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11:19 EDTAAPLApple security breach larger than first thought, Sky News says
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11:03 EDTVLKAYVolkswagen CEO steps down, says not aware of personal wrongdoing
Volkswagen CEO Dr. Winterkorn said in a press release, "I am shocked by the events of the past few days. Above all, I am stunned that misconduct on such a scale was possible in the Volkswagen Group. As CEO I accept responsibility for the irregularities that have been found in diesel engines and have therefore requested the Supervisory Board to agree on terminating my function as CEO of the Volkswagen Group. I am doing this in the interests of the company even though I am not aware of any wrongdoing on my part. Volkswagen needs a fresh start - also in terms of personnel. I am clearing the way for this fresh start with my resignation. I have always been driven by my desire to serve this company, especially our customers and employees. Volkswagen has been, is and will always be my life. The process of clarification and transparency must continue. This is the only way to win back trust. I am convinced that the Volkswagen Group and its team will overcome this grave crisis."
10:41 EDTVLKAYVolkswagen to hold press breifing shortly, CNBC reports
Volkswagen will conduct a press briefing at its German headquarters shortly, reported CNBC. The press event follows the conclusion of a meeting of Volkswagen's supervisory board.
10:00 EDTVLKAYOn The Fly: Analyst Downgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy downgrades include: Baytex Energy (BTE) downgraded to Sector Performer from Outperformer at CIBC... CarMax (KMX) downgraded to Perform from Outperform at Oppenheimer... Cytec Industries (CYT) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies... LG Display (LPL) downgraded to Underperform from Neutral at BofA/Merrill... Magna (MGA) downgraded to Sector Performer from Outperformer at CIBC... Norilsk Nickel (NILSY) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan... Sherwin-Williams (SHW) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Longbow... Volkswagen (VLKAY) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Deutsche Bank.
09:55 EDTFActive calls on open: BIIB FCX X F INTC
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09:45 EDTVLKAYFitch places Volkswagen on Rating Watch Negative
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09:33 EDTAAPLActive equity options trading on open: AAPL BBRY BIDU BIIB
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09:24 EDTAAPLT-Mobile announces $5 per month offer on iPhone 6s
On the cusp of iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus availability, T-Mobile unveiled a $5 a month for iPhone 6s 16GB and $9 a month for iPhone 6s Plus 16GB with JUMP! On Demand and trade-in of an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus. T-Mobile's new pricing builds on the Un-carrier's straightforward $20 a month for a new iPhone 6s 16GB with JUMP! On Demand without a trade-in.
09:18 EDTGM, BA, AAPLPaulson Institute and CCPIT to co-host U.S.-China Business Roundtable
The Paulson Institute and the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) provide an opportunity for U.S. and Chinese business leaders to discuss issues facing the two countries in a roundtable being held in Seattle, Washington on September 23.
08:50 EDTVLKAYWeakness in auto suppliers could create opportunities, says RBC Capital
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07:47 EDTBABoeing to sell 300 planes to Chinese companies, Reuters reports
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07:28 EDTAAPLApple installment plans may accentuate seasonality, says UBS
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06:29 EDTVLKAYVW must give reason for software to bypass criminal charges, Reuters says
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06:24 EDTBANew Boeing tanker to make first flight Friday, WSJ reports
Boeing's new refueling tanker is scheduled to make its first flight as soon as Friday, the Wall Street Journal reports, citing the Pentagon. The flight will initiate a series of tests on one plane over a four-month period, the report says. Reference Link
06:09 EDTVLKAYVolkswagen directors to meet to determine CEO's fate, FT reports
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