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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
June 13, 2012
12:54 EDTAIG, BACNY Fed sells $1.9B of Maiden Lane III assets to Bank of America
The New York Federal Reserve announced on its website that it sold over $1.9B of Maiden Lane III assets to Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAC) in two separate transactions. The Maiden Lane III assets are part of a real estate-backed portfolio acquired in the U.S. government's bailout of AIG (AIG). Reference Link
News For AIG;BAC From The Last 14 Days
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February 1, 2016
09:36 EDTBACActive equity options trading on open
Active equity options trading on open: BAC AAPL FB AMZN TWTR MGM MCD NFLX GILD INTC TSLA AA BABA C
09:01 EDTAIGAIG downgraded at BMO Capital
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06:34 EDTAIGAIG downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital
January 31, 2016
20:43 EDTBACOn The Fly: Top five weekend stock stories
Catch up on the weekend's top five stories with this list compiled by The Fly: 1. Coca-Cola (KO) announced a minority stake in diary and juice company Chi, with plans to take full ownership within three years. 2. Billionaire investor Nelson Peltz is considering taking an activist position in Time Warner (TWX), the New York Post reported. 3. Toyota (TM) could temporarily halt domestic production after an explosion at a key supplier curbed its supply of steel, Reuters said. 4. Investigations into Herbalife (HLF), as well as investigations into Bill Ackman himself, have fizzled and criminal charges look unlikely, the Wall Street Journal revealed. 5. Virtu Financial (VIRT) and Ctrip (CTRP) were discussed positively by Barron's this week, as well as "tech bargains" Autodesk (ADSK), Akamai (AKAM), Western Digital (WDC), SanDisk (SNDK) and Lam Research (LRCX) and attractive banking stocks Citi (C), JPMorgan (JPM), Bank of America (BAC) and Wells Fargo (WFC).
13:40 EDTAIGAIG restructuring could lift shares 20%, Barron's says
AIG's "modular" approach to reorganizing may hold some advantages over the outright breakup suggested by activist investors and could lift shares 20% in a year, Barron's contends in its 'Follow Up' column. If the moves fail to energize the stock, the company will only be further pressured to generate the "quick buck" desired by activists, the publication argues, recommending shareholders to "stay put" in 2016. Reference Link
12:33 EDTBACU.S. banks could return 20% or more, Barron's says
The banking sector looks like "one of the best bargains in the market," Barron's contends in a cover story. Names such as Citi (C), JPMorgan (JPM), Bank of America (BAC), Wells Fargo (WFC), Goldman Sachs (GS), Morgan Stanley (MS), BB&T (BBT), PNC Financial (PNC), SunTrust (STI) and U.S. Bancorp (USB) are showing healthy balance sheets and could offer "at least" 20% upside, the publication argues, adding that the industry's exposure to the energy sector "looks manageable" given information offered in recent earnings reports and conference calls. Reference Link
11:39 EDTAIGS&P falls 5% in January despite second straight winning week to close month
Stocks finished the month of January with two straight winning weeks, but investors are still glad to see the calendar flip as those winners only cut the S&P's loss to 5% for the month. With growth worries abounding amid troubling signs from China and as oil languishes below $35 per barrel, the manufacturing readings from China, Europe, and the U.S. due out on Monday will be essential to whether the new month continues the uptrend of the end of January or the dour tone that dominated the early half of the month. MACRO NEWS: The Federal Reserve kept interest rates unchanged following its policy meeting this week, as almost universally expected. In its accompanying statement, the central bank said its committee members expect that economic conditions will "evolve in a manner that will warrant only gradual increases in the federal funds rate." The group added that inflation is expected to "remain low in the near term, in part because of the further declines in energy prices, but to rise to 2% over the medium term as the transitory effects of declines in energy and import prices dissipate and the labor market strengthens further"... In other domestic economic news, the Commerce Department's first read on fourth quarter gross domestic product came in at 0.7% annualized growth, below the already anemic 0.8% growth forecast. The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index rose 5.8% from the prior year in November, topping expectations for a 5.7% year-over-year increase. The separate FHFA house price index showed a monthly gain of 0.5% in November, matching the consensus forecast. Markit's services PMI for January came in at 53.7, missing the 54.0 forecast. The preliminary reading of the Conference Board's consumer confidence index for January came in at 98.1, topping the 96.5 reading that was expected. New home sales surged 10.8% to a 544,000 annualized pace in December, topping expectations and hitting their highest level in 10 months. Initial jobless claims fell to 278,000 last week, versus the expected 281,000 first-time claims. Durable goods orders dropped 5.1% in December, versus expectations for a decrease of 0.7%. The core reading, which removes transportation items, was down 1.2%, versus expectations for a decline of 0.1%. The University of Michigan consumer sentiment index slipped to 92.0 in the final January print, missing the 93.0 reading that was forecast... In a surprising move in Asia, the Bank of Japan introduced a rate of minus 0.1% on certain excess holdings of cash while maintaining the pace of its asset purchases. Japan also reported data pointing to a softening economy, as total CPI grew 0.2% year-over-year in December, core CPI rose at only a 0.1% pace and industrial production fell a preliminary 1.4% month-over-month in December. COMPANY NEWS: McDonald's (MCD) advanced Monday after the fast food giant reported better than expected earnings and comparable sales growth for the fourth quarter, powered by the launch of All Day Breakfast in the U.S.... Earnings season accelerated Tuesday as four members of the bluechip Dow Jones Industrial Average posted results before the opening bell. 3M (MMM) was the top advanced on the index with a gain of over 5%, while Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Procter & Gamble (PG) and DuPont (DD) all notched gains that day following their reports as well... Apple (AAPL) declined more than 6.5% on Wednesday after the tech giant reported first quarter earnings that topped consensus estimates, but also issued revenue guidance for the new quarter that missed expectations. The company was noted by several analysts as taking a particularly downbeat tone in its earnings conference call, invoking the difficult macroeconomic environment and weakness it has recently seen in China. Apple was not the worst performer in the Dow that day, as Boeing (BA) shares plummeted nearly 9% after its profit outlook for the new fiscal year fell far short of the Street's consensus forecast... Facebook (FB) surged 15.5% on Thursday after the social media giant's fourth quarter earnings and revenue beat expectations. A number of Wall Street analysts increased their price targets for the stock following the report, including Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster, who hiked his target to a "Street-high" $170 per share. The same day, Caterpillar (CAT) reported better than expected quarterly earnings, excluding certain items, but its revenue came in below the consensus forecast and the heavy equipment maker warned that it does not anticipate an improvement in the world economy or commodity prices in 2016. The stock, which had declined almost 20% in the last three months prior to this morning's report, rebounded almost 5% after the company jumped over the lowered bar that had been set by bearish analysts... On Friday, shares of Amazon (AMZN) declined more than 7.5% after the company's fourth quarter results came in below expectations. Meanwhile, Microsoft (MSFT), which reported better than expected earnings, gained almost 6%. Chevron (CVX) reported a quarterly loss due to taking impairments and other charges of $1.1B. The company, which also reported that its average sales price per barrel of crude oil and natural gas liquids in the U.S. was $35 in fourth quarter, down from $66 a year ago, edged up 0.7% to $86.44... Among the many others reporting earnings this week, Visa (V), Mastercard (MA), Under Armour (UA), Sprint (S) and Biogen (BIIB) gained immediately following their reports, while Qualcomm (QCOM), eBay (EBAY), U.S. Steel (X), VMware (VMW) and Anthem (ANTM) all slid following their own... Xerox (XRX) announced plans to separate into two independent publicly-traded companies: one focused on Document Technology and another Business Process Outsourcing company. Xerox also announced an agreement related to the governance of the Business Process Outsourcing company under which six directors of the new company will be selected by Xerox and three will be selected by current Xerox shareholder Carl Icahn... Terex (TEX) surged more than 36% higher on Tuesday after receiving a $30 per share acquisition offer from China's Zoomlion. Terex peers Manitowoc (MTW), Joy Global (JOY) and Oshkosh (OSK) also gained after the offer was disclosed... Weight Watchers (WTW) shares soared nearly 20% Tuesday after noted shareholder and partner Oprah Winfrey tweeted a video detailing her progress using the company's program, indicating that she'd already lost 26 pounds thanks to its plan... AIG (AIG) provided its much-anticipated strategy update, committing to return at least $25B to shareholders over the next two years and announcing the sale of AIG Advisor Group to Lightyear Capital and PSP Investments. The company, under ongoing pressure from activist investors including Carl Icahn, also said it will publicly offer a portion of its United Guaranty unit, though it expressly rejected a full company breakup... SunEdison (SUNE) gained 18% during the week after agreeing to new corporate governance initiatives with David Einhorn's Greenlight Capital, including amending its bylaws to restrict equity issuances for two years without a supermajority board vote... Twitter (TWTR) slumped nearly 6% this week after CEO Jack Dorsey confirmed the departure of four company executives, leading research firm Stifel to downgrade the shares. INDEXES: The Dow gained about 2.2% to close at 16,466.30; the S&P 500 rose about 1.6% to close at 1,940.24; the Nasdaq advanced about 0.4% to close at 4,613.95.
January 29, 2016
16:00 EDTBACOptions Update; January 29, 2016
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10:05 EDTBACOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy upgrades include: Atlassian (TEAM) upgraded on positive outlook at JMP Securities... BRF S.A. (BRFS) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Bank of America (BAC) upgraded to Outperform from Sell at CLSA... CEMEX (CX) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies... Chemical Financial (CHFC) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Fig Partners... Computer Programs (CPSI) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Topeka... DST Systems (DST) upgraded to Outperform at Baird... Diamond Offshore (DO) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Citi... First Cash Financial (FCFS) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Janney Capital... First Merchants (FRME) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Stephens... Flex (FLEX) upgraded on solid results at Stifel... Intercept (ICPT) upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight at Morgan Stanley... J.C. Penney (JCP) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse... JetBlue (JBLU) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Evercore ISI... Juniper (JNPR) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Bernstein... Live Oak Bancshares (LOB) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at SunTrust... Microsemi (MSCC) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Wells Fargo... NetSuite (N) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Canaccord... NextEra Energy (NEE) upgraded to Outperform at Baird... Oshkosh (OSK) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at SunTrust... PC Connection (PCCC) upgraded to Market Perform from Underperform at Raymond James... Pinnacle Financial (PNFP) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Stephens... Potash (POT) upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at Scotiabank... Rayonier (RYN) upgraded on valuation at BMO Capital... SanDisk (SNDK) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Needham... Select Comfort (SCSS) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Wedbush... Sotherly Hotels (SOHO) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Janney Capital... Textura (TXTR) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Northland... Valley National (VLY) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Sandler O'Neill.
08:21 EDTBAC, BACBank of America upgraded to Outperform from Sell at CLSA
CLSA analyst Mike Mayo upgraded Bank of America two notches to Outperform from Sell and increased his price target to $16 from $15 on shares. Mayo is more positive on large U.S. banks, saying their stocks are at "recession prices" without a recession, and said Bank of America is more resilient and could grow book value even in a recession. The analyst, who thinks BofA's book value is relatively clean, said the stock could become event-driven, given "lousy efficiency" and a valuation 20% below estimated Q4 tangible book value.
07:31 EDTBACBank, financial stocks look cheap, says Oppenheimer
After an index of bank stocks fell 19% since last summer, versus an 8% decline for the S&P, Oppenheimer says that "the group looks cheap." The firm says that banks' balance sheets will remain strong whether the economy is resilient or enters a downturn. The firm says that the banks' Q4 results were stable, and it expects the group to benefit from steady loan growth and slightly rising NIMs in 2016. Oppenheimer continues to recommend Bank of America (BAC), Citi (C), Goldman Sachs (GS), Discover (DFS), and Fifth Third (FITB)
January 28, 2016
18:19 EDTBACBank of America, Wells Fargo to integrate Apple Pay in ATMs, TechCrunch says
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16:00 EDTBACOptions Update; January 28, 2016
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures down 84c to 25.21 Option volume leaders: FB AAPL MSFT AMZN NFLX BAC BABA QCOM AAL MU C RIG
06:50 EDTBACBank of America loads up heavily on blockchain patents, CNBC reports
Bank of America is attempting to steal a march on the latest developments in the technology behind bitcoin by going big on blockchain-related patents, CNBC reports. Blockchain operates as a large, decentralized ledger for bitcoin which records each transaction and stores this information on a global network, the report notes. Bank of America is trying to patent some of the use cases of blockchain, having filed for 15 patents related to blockchain and is currently drafting an additional 20 to submit to the U.S. PTO, the report says. Reference Link
January 27, 2016
17:10 EDTAIGA.M. Best places AIG and subsidiaries' ratings under review
A.M. Best has placed under review with negative implications the issuer credit rating of American International Group and the financial strength ratings and ICRs of its insurance subsidiaries. The under review status reflects the strengthening of loss reserves in AIG's non-life business by $3.6 billion during the fourth quarter of 2015, primarily reflecting adverse development on prior accident years in longer-tailed lines of business. While the reserve actions are spread across a number of accident years, A.M. Best is concerned that approximately 41% of the strengthening relates to 2011-2013 accident years, for which either favorable or modestly adverse development had been previously reported, and the 2014 accident year. The total amount of the deficiency reported exceeds A.M. Best's assumptions of loss reserve deficiency, excluding the reversal of statutory discounts of reserves for workers' compensation. The under review status also considers the potential impact on the business profile and future earnings capacity of AIG of the strategic actions being taken by management to improve profitability and efficiency and maximize shareholder value.
16:01 EDTBACOptions Update; January 28, 2016
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures up 1.02 to 26.01. Option volume leaders: AAPL FB BAC NFLX FCX BABA AA X VZ BA T
11:09 EDTAIGOptions with increasing put volume
Options with increasing put volume: RDN MTG HES BKD TAP RRC GG MTW AIG CLR PYPL
10:10 EDTBACActive calls: XOM AAPL SPY BAC UUP
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09:32 EDTBACActive equity options trading on open
Active equity options trading on open: AAPL FB AMZN AAL BAC PCLN NFLX MRK GOOG
06:59 EDTAIGAIG goals look too optimistic, says Deutsche Bank
Deutsche Bank analyst Joshua Shanker says that if AIG (AIG) hits its stated goal of 600 basis point reduction in Commercial P&C loss ratio through 2017, its core loss ratio would be better than both Travelers (TRV) and the new Chubb (CB). Shanker views the goal as too optimistic and is not modeling for it entirely in his model. He keeps a Hold rating on AIG with a $60 price target.
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