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News Breaks
June 10, 2014
09:17 EDTFOXA, CMCSA, T, DISCA, SNI, VIAB, TWX, AMCXMedia companies may be weighing purchase of AMC Networks, says Topeka
Topeka believes that it is very possible that a few major media companies are weighing an acquisition of AMC Networks (AMCX) in order to improve their positions vis-a-vis AT&T (T) and Comcast (CMCSA) in the wake of their recent acquisitions. The firm sees Viacom (VIAB), Discovery (DISCA), Time Warner (TWX), Scripps Networks (SNI), and Twenty-First Century Fox (FOXA) as potential acquirers of AMC Networks. It keeps an $87 price target and Buy rating on AMC.
News For AMCX;VIAB;DISCA;TWX;SNI;FOXA;T;CMCSA From The Last 14 Days
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August 14, 2014
09:07 EDTTWX, T, CMCSA, FOXA, DISCAMorgan Stanley to hold a conference
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06:05 EDTTWXStocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; TWX WAG
Stocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; Time Warner (TWX) 25, Walgreen (WAG) 23 according to iVolatility.
August 13, 2014
11:27 EDTTJDSU falls after outlook disappoints, analyst downgrades
Shares of JDSU (JDSU), a provider of equipment to telecommunications service providers, are sharply lower after the company's fourth quarter results and first quarter guidance were reported last night. Following the report, the stock was downgraded this morning at two Street research firms. WHAT'S NEW: Last night, JDSU reported fourth quarter adjusted earnings of 14c per share, beating the consensus forecast by 1c, on revenue of $448.6M, which topped the consensus $436.8M view. However, JDSU expects revenue to be $405M-$425M in its first quarter and sees Q1 EPS of 8c-12c, which fell short of consensus of about $441M and 14c, respectively. JDSU's President and CEO Tom Waechter said, "Looking ahead to fiscal 2015, we believe there are strong market drivers across our three business segments, and that we are well positioned with differentiated products and solutions to support our customers as they transition to Software Defined Networks, Network Function Virtualization and more dependency on cloud infrastructure. We continue to lead in our core network and anti-counterfeiting markets and I am pleased with the momentum we are building in our commercial lasers business on the strength of our highly differentiated fiber laser product line." ANALYST OPINION: Following the company's report, B. Riley analyst Dave Kang cut his rating on JDSU shares to Neutral from a Buy rating, citing near-term uncertainties in the North American telecom market. Kang pointed to two events contributing to that uncertainty, namely an architectural shift to SDN, or Software Defined Networking, and AT&T's (T) planned merger with DirecTV (DTV). The analyst acknowledged previously underestimating the potential impact of the SDN shift on the telecom equipment industry and noted that appears to be impacting JDSU's NSE business more than its optical component unit. Kang prefers Finisar (FNSR) over JDSU given the current environment, noting that about 70% of Finisar's sales come from the datacom sector. Kang lowered his price target on JDS Uniphase shares to $11.75 from $15.50. Piper Jaffray analyst Troy Jensen also downgraded JDSU following its report, lowering his rating on the stock to Neutral from Overweight. Jensen also said the company's worse than expected guidance indicates softer Telco spending and he believes JDSU will have trouble showing significant revenue acceleration even if the optical upgrade cycle starts to ramp up. Piper lowered its price target on the stock to $12 from $14. OTHERS TO WATCH: Other providers of telecom equipment include Ciena (CIEN) and Infinera (INFN). PRICE ACTION: In morning trading, shares of JDSU fell $1.12, or 9.4%, to $10.78. Meanwhile, shares of Finisar were down nearly 2% to $19.58, Ciena slipped 1.5% to $18.92 and Infinera was fractionally higher at $9.09.
06:04 EDTTWXStocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; TWX WAG
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August 12, 2014
14:55 EDTTFrontier Communications confirms settlement with Connecticut AG over AT&T deal
Frontier Communications (FTR) announced it has reached an agreement with the Connecticut Attorney General and the Office of Consumer Counsel related to Frontierís proposed acquisition of AT&T's (T) incumbent local exchange operations and statewide fiber network that provides services to residential, commercial and wholesale customers in Connecticut. As part of the transaction, Frontier will also acquire AT&T's U-verse video and satellite TV operations in Connecticut. Highlights of the agreement state that for a period of not less than 36 months after the closing of the transaction (i) there will be no increases in the basic primary residential rate in effect for transferred exchanges as of the closing date; and (ii) where available, Frontier has agreed to offer its basic broadband and stand-alone basic broadband product at or below Frontierís current prices. In addition, Frontier has committed to incremental capital investments totaling $63M over 2015, 2016 and 2017 to expand and improve broadband in Connecticut.
10:38 EDTCMCSAAxial collects $11M from backers, Fortune says
Private company financing online platform Axial has collected nearly $11M in Series B funding from backers such as Redpoint Ventures, First Round Capital and Comcast Ventures, according to Fortune, citing comments from Axial CEO Peter Lehrman. Comcast Ventures was the primary backer. Reference Link
06:02 EDTTWXStocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; TWX WAG
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August 11, 2014
15:45 EDTTSpherix subsidiary settles with AT&T, files joint motion to dismiss
Spherix (SPEX) subsidiary Guidance IP has reached a settlement with AT&T (T), according to a court document filed August 7 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas. The settlement stems from a lawsuit filed on December 6, 2013 by Spherix for infringement of its patent entitled, "System and Method for Determining the Geolocation of a Transmitter." Shares of small-cap Spherix are up 19% to $1.75 in later afternoon trading following the circulation of the court filing. Reference Link
11:20 EDTSNIScripps Networks management to meet with Sterne Agee
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09:52 EDTFOXAValueAct owns $1B stake in 21st Century Fox, CNBC reports
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09:48 EDTFOXAValueAct likes 21st Century Fox standalone plan, CNBC reports
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09:47 EDTFOXAValueAct has $1B stake in 21st Century Fox, CNBC's Faber reports
08:21 EDTTWXTime Warner price target lowered to $85 from $90 at FBR Capital
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06:10 EDTTWXStocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; TWX WAG
Stocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; Time Warner (TWX) 27, Time Warner Walgreen (WAG) 26 according to iVolatility.
August 10, 2014
17:04 EDTVIABParamount's 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' tops weekend box office, WSJ says
Paramount Pictures' (VIA,VIAB) "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" edged out Disney's (DIS) "Guardians of the Galaxy," opening to an estimated $65M in the U.S. and Canada, says the Wall Street Journal. Reference Link
August 8, 2014
17:10 EDTTWX, FOXAMarket finishes week up slightly as earnings offset by political events
Stocks finished the week fractionally higher than where they started as strong corporate earnings reports and better than expected economic data was weighed against concerns about geopolitical issues and negative M&A news. MACRO NEWS: A few ongoing geopolitical conflicts worried investors and weighed on shares. Russia unveiled sanctions against Western countries, banning the import of a wide range of food items from the U.S, the EU and a few allied countries in response to sanctions recently enacted against it from G7 nations... President Obama authorized the bombing of rebels in Iraq and Hamas and Israel failed to reach a permanent truce... An ISM services index, the U.S. trade deficit for June, and weekly jobless claims were all better than expected. Meanwhile, the increase in unit labor costs last quarter came in below the consensus outlook, perhaps easing fears that the Fed will need to raise interest rates sooner than expected. COMPANY NEWS: On the M&A front, two huge potential deals fell through as 21st Century Fox (FOX, FOXA) withdrew its offer to acquire Time Warner (TWX) and Sprint (S) reportedly decided to end its pursuit of a merger with peer T-Mobile (TMUS)... President Obama indicated that his administration would take unilateral steps in an effort to prevent companies from carrying out tax inversion acquisitions. Among the deals or possible transactions that involve inversion are Medtronic's (MDT) acquisition of Covidien (COV), Valeant's (VRX) proposed takeover of Allergan (AGN) and Mylan's (MYL) acquisition of Abbott's (ABT) developed markets branded generics pharmaceuticals business. Meanwhile, Walgreen's (WAG) stock tumbled after the U.S. company said it would not structure its takeover of European drugstore chain Alliance Boots as a tax inversion deal... 21st Century Fox, 3D printer maker Stratasys (SSYS), chip maker NVIDIA (NVDA), brewer Molson Coors (TAP), and luxury accessories maker Coach (COH) all rose following their earnings reports. Conversely, Target (TGT), luxury accessories maker Michael Kors (KORS) and Internet coupon provider Groupon (GRPN) fell following their results or guidance... Gannett (GCI) struck a deal to acquire the remaining 73% interest in Classified Ventures, whose primary asset is the online car shopping website Cars.com, for $1.8B from the other partners in the venture, which include McClatchy (MNI), Tribune Media (TRBAA), Graham Holdings (GHC) and A. H. Belo (AHC). Gannett also announced plans to spin-off its Publishing business, which includes USA Today, through a tax-free distribution to shareholders... McDonald's (MCD) stock was little changed after the company reported that its comparable store sales fell 2.5% in July, which was significantly worse than expected. Food quality issues weighed on the fast food company's sales in Asia and as a result of the China supplier issue, the company warned its previously issued global comparable sales forecast for 2014 is now at risk. INDEXES: The Dow finished the week up 0.35% to 16,553.93, the S&P 500 rose 0.32% to 1,931.59, and the Nasdaq gained 0.41% to 4,370.90.
11:32 EDTTSprint is preparing to engage in fierce pricing war, WSJ reports
Sprint (S) is preparing to engage in a fierce price competition on the heels of an almost complete network revamp, according to the Wall Street Journal, citing Masayoshi Son, the CEO of parent company Softbank (SFTBY). Sprint is currently testing new pricing plans, and will utilize its "street fighter" strategies to take on larger rivals Verizon (VZ) and AT&T (T). "Price competition will intensify. Sprint will soon be ready to join the fray," Son said. Reference Link
07:56 EDTTSonus Networks upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Barrington
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06:04 EDTTWXStocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; TWX WAG
Stocks with implied volatility below IV index mean; Time Warner (TWX) 30, Time Warner Walgreen (WAG) 26 according to iVolatility.
05:50 EDTTWXStocks with implied volatility movement; TWX VRX
Stocks with implied volatility movement; Time Warner (TWX) 30, Valeant (VRX) 49 according to iVolatility.
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