Advance Auto Parts says three-year cost synergy target is $160M Says pleased with start to FY14. Says saw steady customer demand due to the extreme winter weather in Q1. Says experienced some volatility early in the quarter from weather related store closures. Says customers likely benefited from timely tax refunds and stable gas prices vs. a year ago to pay for unexpected repairs. Says will continue to invest in areas that drive sales growth and profit outcomes. In terms of the acquisition of General Parts, the company says that it is still in the early days of multi-year integration process but off to the start that the company expected. Expects to realize $45M-$55M cost synergies this FY. Says growth and profitability is on track. Expects BWP store conversions to be complete by the end of the fiscal year. Says will continue to work towards goal of opening 120-140 new stores this fiscal year. Expects inventory growth to flatten as the company progresses throughout the year. Expects to maintain an effective tax rate of 38% for the balance of the fiscal year. Says on pace to deliver first year cost synergies and sees majority of synergies occurring in 2H14. Comments made during the company's Q1 earnings conference call.
On The Fly: Analyst Initiation Summary Today's noteworthy initiations include: AbbVie (ABBV) initiated with a Buy at Deutsche Bank... Advance Auto Parts (AAP) initiated with a Buy at Sterne Agee... AutoZone (AZO) initiated with an Underperform at Sterne Agee... Carter's (CRI) initiated with a Buy at Sterne Agee... Children's Place (PLCE) initiated with a Neutral at Sterne Agee... Container Store (TCS) initiated with a Fair Value at CRT Capital... DHT Holdings (DHT) initiated with a Buy at UBS... Diana Shipping (DSX) initiated with a Neutral at UBS... Genuine Parts (GPC) initiated with a Neutral at Sterne Agee... National Oilwell (NOV) initiated with a Neutral at UBS... Navios Acquisition (NNA) initiated with a Buy at UBS... NeoStem (NBS) assumed with a Buy at Maxim... O'Reilly Automotive (ORLY) initiated with a Neutral at Sterne Agee... Scorpio Bulkers (SALT) initiated with a Neutral at UBS... Star Bulk Carriers (SBLK) initiated with a Neutral at UBS... Teekay Tankers (TNK) initiated with a Buy at UBS... The Buckle (BKE) initiated with an Underweight at BB&T... TriMas (TRS) initiated with an Overweight at JPMorgan... TriplePoint Venture (TPVG) initiated with a Buy at UBS... Tsakos Energy (TNP) initiated with a Buy at UBS... USD Partners (USDP) initiated with an Outperform at Credit Suisse... Zumiez (ZUMZ) initiated with a Buy at BB&T.